Council reward for helping older people
Published on 23 January 2012 12:00 PM
Councils are to take on responsibility for public health and be rewarded for reducing the number of falls in older people, it is believed.
The Government is expected to unveil plans in which councils will be allocated more than £2 billion to look after public healthcare.
Councils will, it is thought, be judged against a variety of measures such as increasing breastfeeding rates, reducing truancy and homelessness, and cutting the number of falls in older people. A 'Health Premium' incentive scheme would see the most successful councils given extra funds.
Councils have not been in charge of looking after public health since the 1970s. It will be up to them to work out how the improvements will be achieved.
According to the Daily Telegraph, the Health Secretary Andrew Lansley will unveil the new Public Health Outcomes Framework in a speech at the Faculty of Public Health.
Mr Lansley is expected to discuss how public health was sidelined between 2000 and 2010, and call for it to be improved.
'Obesity rates from 2000 to 2010 rose from 21.2% to 26.1% so now over a quarter of adults are obese' he will reportedly say. 'Sexually transmitted infections, after the steep declines in the 80s to 90s, doubled in the subsequent decade. And health inequalities persist, with gaps in life expectancy of over a decade between people born in the richest areas and people born in the poorest.'
Under the plans, councils are also expected to be rewarded for cutting tooth decay in children, slashing domestic violence and reducing air pollution. Data will be collected on more than 60 factors that influence health.
Copyright Press Association 2012