Scheme of the Month - Public Health specialist support to Bristol Council


In 2006 a new Director of Public Health, Hugh Annett, was appointed jointly by Bristol Primary Care Trust (PCT) and Bristol City Council. Such joint appointments are becoming commonplace and provide the foundations for greater engagement between such organisations. While a joint appointment is no guarantee of effective collaboration between the sectors it is generally a prerequisite.

PCT’s understand clearly that the determinants of health lie largely outside the health sector and that areas such as transport have historically been neglected beyond acute health impacts, notably road traffic injuries. To address this, a proposal was made to create a public health and transport specialist post (0.4fte), located in the Council’s transport department. Dr. Adrian Davies has fulfilled this role, since October 2008, wholly funded by the PCT. With a background and training in both disciplines Adrian is well placed to act as a key link between the two sectors. Appointments have followed on in other areas ie a new specialist planning post focused on health and another addressing carbon and climate change.

Adrian’s overriding task is to support and encourage more health promoting transport policies and practice. Consequently planning for the Joint Local Transport Plan 3 commencing April 2011 is a priority. Providing evidenced base support is a notable output, identifying ‘what works’ and ‘what may work’ (see web-link). A prime example of a new work stream as a result of the post is a Council, PCT and University of the West of England partnership to fund a research project. This is assessing the benefits of a road danger reduction approach to road safety interventions. One key aspect of road danger reduction is speed reduction. This sits well with the Council’s interest in expanding the number of 20mph residential street speed limits.



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