The strongest determinants of health and health inequalities are the social, economic, commercial and environmental conditions in which people live: the wider determinants of health.
The wider determinants of health are multiple, diverse, and interrelated factors that shape the health of people in an area. Creating the conditions for better health in local places requires system-wide partnership action on these wider determinants.
This programme is funding five local government-led partnerships to make sustainable changes to local systems, which are consistent with improved population health, and designed to last beyond the lifetime of the programme.
What does the Shaping Places for Healthier Lives programme aim to achieve over the three years?
The objectives of this programme are to:
- mobilise cross-sector action on the wider determinants of health through sustainable system change at a local level
- support local authorities to facilitate and enable local partnerships for system change on the wider determinants of health
- learn how to make changes that impact on the wider determinants of health.
Five local councils have been chosen to explore some major health factors
This programme does not expect to see a whole system change; this can take many years (decades even). We are looking at how (and whether) councils can be a key partner to lead system change.
The five local councils selected for this programme have developed their projects through a three-stage application process, during which they have built their partnerships, engaged and involved residents, and built an understanding of the systems of factors that influence their chosen topic. They will implement aligned approach across these systems, learning and adapting over the three-year period.
The local partnerships will address the diverse topics of food security, mental health, and fear of violence and crime in their communities.
Why are the systems that support our health so complex?
A system is many interdependent elements within a connected whole. Everything we do and how we live in our society is made up of systems.
These elements affect each other, and impact on each other throughout the system. System change in terms of health and health inequality means ‘coordinated cross sector action at multiple points’ across the system to shape it in ways that support and ‘promote health for the whole population in a place’.
We know that things need to change otherwise the health inequalities affecting our local communities will continue to get wider (gaps between poor and good health are growing).
Who will the learning be shared with?
Public health bodies, local partnerships, academics, council partners, health and housing organisations, care and health charities, the police and employment centres should all be interested in the learning this programme will generate.
Learning will be shared through the LGA’s website and our partner The Health Foundation. Please let us know if you would like to be kept informed of progress and learning from this programme.
Send your email now to [email protected] to stay updated on the programme.