Joint appointment plans for public health posts

    The government is to support the development of joint
    appointments between health authorities and local government to
    deliver improvements to public health, the Department of Health
    revealed last week.

    The department has commissioned a study which will provide
    different working models for joint directors of public health for
    use by councils and health authorities, in response to criticism
    from the House of Commons health select committee.

    “We are not convinced that the DoH has been sufficiently
    proactive in helping this come about,” the committee’s report
    said.

    In its response, the government argues that joint working
    already exists even where joint appointments have not been
    made.

    It describes co-terminosity between councils and health
    authorities as “a key driver for joint working and partnerships”
    and, as a result, wants to ensure that the boundaries of the new
    strategic health authorities – to be set up next April – do not cut
    across local authority boundaries.

    The government is also considering ways of “aligning” councils’
    Community Strategies with health authorities’ Health Improvement
    Plans.

    Government Response to the Select Committee on Health’s Second
    Report on Public Health at www.doh.gov.uk/phreport2.htm

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