Andrew Lansley this morning revealed his personal ambition for a new Public Health Service, where public health is something that is taken seriously at all levels – nationally, locally, and as individuals. The Secretary of State for Health announced that the Prime Minister has agreed to the formation of a Cabinet Sub-Committee on Public Health, which Mr Lansley will chair.
A new Health Premium which will target public health resources towards the areas with the poorest health was also announced, alongside confirmation that we can expect a public health white paper in the autumn. Mr Lansley also outlined his commitment to Change4Life, but said that he wanted to change it from being a government campaign to a social movement, with reduced central funding and great financial contributions from business, local government and charities.
Mr Lansley also made reference to last week’s controversy at the BMA conference, declaring that “contrary to the media reporting, I applauded Jamie Oliver’s initiative” and argued that the TV chef understood that encouragement and empowerment are what is needed to improve the public’s health, not regulations and rules.
Full text of the Secretary of State’s speech is now available here.