03:03am Wednesday 23 October 2019

Tackling health inequalities together – Good Practice Guides

The guides will be a resource for all those working to improve health and tackle inequalities in Northern Ireland.

The guides: Reducing young people’s drinking; Obesity and Reducing smoking in pregnancy will identify practices that have been shown to reduce health inequalities. They will assist many individuals, groups and organisations – from local government, education, housing and the community and voluntary sectors, for example – in their work to promote health and wellbeing, by providing evidence-based and up-to-date tools and information.

Describing the importance of the Good Practice Guides, Mary Black, Assistant Director of Public Health, Health and Social Wellbeing Improvement, PHA said: “The Public Health Agency was set up to promote and enhance the factors that influence good health and wellbeing, and to reduce the avoidable and unjust differences in health experienced by the best and worst-off in our society. We know that health inequalities are closely linked to social disadvantage and can be increased by emotional difficulties and life situations. This series of Good Practice Guides is designed to capture information about health inequalities and highlight measures and activities that have been shown to help reduce them.

“The first three guides will not only provide information and evidence-based approaches to reduce health inequalities, but will also be assessed for their own usefulness. Following this, we plan to issue further guides on other issues, such as ‘poverty and cold weather conditions’, ‘anti-social behaviour’, ‘promoting health and wellbeing in black and minority ethnic (BME) groups, including Travellers and migrant workers’ and ‘community development’. All the guides will be kept under review and amended in light of the experiences of those who use them.”

The guides: Reducing young people’s drinking; Obesity and Reducing smoking in pregnancy are now available on the PHA website: www.publichealth.hscni.net

Notes to the editor

• As part of the reforms of Health and Social Care, the Public Health Agency is working more closely with local government to collectively deliver real change in health and wellbeing in communities across Northern Ireland, to help make real improvement to health inequalities.

• The guides will help to inform those who will be developing or approving types of interventions that are most likely to have an impact on the wider population and specific target groups.

• Production of the guides reflects the values and vision of the Public Health Agency.

o Values: All our work will focus on the health and social wellbeing needs of the community we serve, and we will address inequalities and gaps where these arise. We will value and develop our staff and strive for excellence in all we do.

o Vision: Health and social outcomes for the people of Northern Ireland that are among the best in the world; development of a fit-for-purpose organisation that applies its skills and capabilities successfully in partnership with others to address the key challenges to public health in our community.

Further information

The Good Practice Guides can be downloaded at www.publichealth.hscni.net/publications/good-practice-guides

Contact the PHA Press Office, Ormeau Avenue, on 028 9031 1611.

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