Hull Public Health 

The Deep, Hull The Guildhall, Hull King William Statue, Market Place, Hull City Hall, Hull Spurn Lightship, The Marina, Hull



Director of Public Health (DPH) Annual Reports

DPH Annual Report 2019 - "Golden Years - Healthier Longer Lives in Hull"

"This year I wanted to use the opportunity of my DPH report to talk about population health approaches to understanding and addressing inequalities in life expectancy and healthy life expectancy because this tells us a great deal about how we are doing as a society.

In Hull, like many places in England, improvements in life expectancy have stalled. We have also seen a worsening picture in terms of healthy life expectancy and inequalities in health. The impact of this for those living with a long term condition and our society is huge. If we want to address this we need renewed effort on population health and population health management.

Population health is an approach that provides a framework for exploring ways to understand and improve physical and mental health across an entire population with a focus on four pillars: the wider determinants of health; our health behaviours and lifestyles; integrated health and care systems; and our communities.

Population health management provides the information and tools to guide those developing
policies and those planning, commissioning and delivering services."- Julia Weldon

Download the 2019 report here.

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DPH Annual Report 2018 - "A step change for children's health in Hull"

"This year I want to start another citywide conversation, a collective call to action on one of the most significant and challenging health issues that we face in Hull, in England and across the globe.

Over the following pages I will share my call to action for all organisations and communities in Hull to reach a common understanding of what the problem of unhealthy weight in childhood means for us as a city and outline the scope of the response required to tackle the issue, I will showcase the excellent work that is already happening and describe how we intend to take a Whole Systems Approach going forward.- Julia Weldon"

Download the 2018 report here.

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DPH Annual Report 2017 - "A Better Future in Mind!"

From the letter introducing the 2017 DPH report:

"This year, as we celebrate our year as UK City of Culture, I have produced a short documentary for my annual report, my fourth as Director of Public Health for Hull.

The film explores what is meant by mental health and emotional wellbeing and what we are doing to address different aspects such as mental wellbeing in children and young people; reducing stigma; mental health and employment; connected communities and suicide prevention.

I have chosen to focus on mental health because it is a national as well as a local priority.  The Five Year Forward View for Mental Health stresses the need for key partners, including CCGs and Local Authorities to work together to target those groups of people we know are at higher risk of developing mental health problems. So in Hull, together with our NHS partners, we have also just launched our joint Mental Health & Suicide Prevention Action Plan, which adds detail to the recommendations in the film.

In developing and producing the film, we have worked closely with NHS Hull CCG, the Hull 2017 City of Culture team and other partners in the business, voluntary and community sectors. I wanted to make sure the report is accessible to a wide audience so we can engage as many people as possible with our aim to start a city wide conversation on mental health and make Hull an emotionally healthy city in which to live and work.- Julia Weldon"

The film may be accessed here:

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DPH Annual Report 2016 - "Dancing in the Street: Maximising the Health and Wellbeing Benefits of UK City of Culture"

"My Public Health team undertook an assessment of the potential health impact of 2017, challenging the UK City of Culture team to get behind a health and wellbeing focus. We agreed to grasp all the potential benefits of a programme of arts and culture for our city. Such was the enthusiasm, a number of health priorities were written into the Hull, UK City of Culture 2017 Strategic Plan including:

• improving mental wellbeing using the arts and integrating health promoting activities in public events
• creating opportunities for physical activity through arts participation
• reducing social isolation through inclusive work in our communities and encouraging intergenerational working through an access-forall artistic programme
• maximising the health legacy by developing employability skills and building on Hull's reputation as a pioneer in health outreach arts activity.

The successful City of Culture bid was just the start of this collaborative journey between culture and health.
We now have the ground work in place and are getting ready to launch the 2017 programme through a 'health
lens'. We may not be able to improve the health of the entire city in a single year, but everyone involved is
determined it will be a catalyst for change.- Julia Weldon"

Download the 2016 report here.

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DPH Annual Report 2015 - "We Could Be Heroes!"

"This year's report tells the story of how smoking affects the people of Hull, and my aspirations to inspire and achieve a smoke-free generation for the city by 2025.

This year, Hull City Council and Hull Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) joined others across the country in signing the Declaration on Tobacco Control.

This provides a foundation for Hull and our bold ambition that the next generation of children will be born and raised in a place free from tobacco, where smoking is unusual.

This bold ambition is shared by all Yorkshire and Humber authorities which are supporting Breathe 2025, but there is no doubt that Hull has the biggest challenge.

You will have noticed that there is a different look and feel to this year's report. I wanted to highlight the mission for a smoke free generation and celebrate our local, regional and national heroes who have joined us in this. I also wanted to make sure that this year's report was accessible to a wider audience.- Julia Weldon"

Download the 2015 report here.

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DPH Annual Report 2014 - "A Time For Change: Working together for a more equal and healthier Hull"

"Why are we focusing on health inequalities this year?

When we talk about inequalities in health we are describing the 'systematic differences in health between social groups that are avoidable by organised action and are considered unfair and unjust'(1).

Inequalities are not inevitable and they can be reduced. Health and wellbeing is improving overall in Hull but this isn't true for everyone. It is unfair and unjust that in 2014 where you are born and live can determine your quality of life and life expectancy.

We have better knowledge than ever before, through Fair Society, Healthy Lives (2) and other evidence, of how the physical, social and economic conditions in which we are born, grow up and work, shape our health directly and indirectly by influencing our lifestyles. We know that efforts to promote health and address health inequalities have a better chance of working if they are framed in how people live their everyday lives, their daily routines and the importance of place and community (3). We also know that we cannot turn the curve on health inequalities if we do not work with our people and communities.

Hull does not stand alone in relation to health inequalities and many issues are beyond the City's control but nevertheless influence its ability to achieve greater fairness and equality. The whole of the North of England has persistently poorer health than the rest of England and the health inequalities gap has continued to widen. We cannot focus on tackling health inequalities without reminding ourselves of the significant economic challenges facing the public sector, our citizens and our communities as austerity measures continue to disproportionately affect the poorest areas including Hull. We cannot ignore these as we seek to understand and combat the factors that drive inequalities." - Julia Weldon

1 Due North -Report of the Inquiry on Health Equity for the North, University of Liverpool and Centre for Local Economic Strategies, 2014
3 Public Health England Business Plan, May 2014

Download the 2014 report here

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DPH Annual Report 2012 - "Here We Come"

"'Here we come' was the first line of the theme tune to the TV programme 'The Monkees', and it was the first think that came into my mind as we enter the final stages of the transition of public health from the NHS to local government. The changes were originally announced more than two years ago and that has led to significantly uncertainty during that time for public health professionals. However, my team in Hull have continued to be committed to working on health improvement plans for the City and now, during our last few months in the NHS, it really does feel as though we are saying 'here we come' to our local authority colleagues who have been so supportive during the transition process. My NHS public health team have worked very closely with Hull City Council colleagues for many years, and having moved into local authority premises in November 2012, the physical move has meant that we have been able to more effectively integrate public health into range of plans which will have a positive impact on the City's health now and in the future... My report will describe some of the work that we have undertaken during the past year to ensure that our approach to public health will continue from the local authority setting... The work that that has been undertaken, and indeed is still ongoing, will give public health and health improvement in the City an excellent grounding from which to start its local authority life but very much with a focus on continuing the excellent work that has gone before – a seamless join and a joinless seam." - Wendy Richardson

Download the 2012 report here

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DPH Annual Report 2011 - "Outlook: An Enlightened View of Hull"

"Considering mental health in our population in Hull, our most recent survey showed that the more deprived an area in which you live, the more likely it is that you will score the state of your mental health as being low. This, of course, should not surprise any of us. If you are worried about levels of income, housing, children's education, care of elderly relatives and maybe some ongoing health issues then it stands to reason that this will manifest itself in a range of ways. This brings me to the main topic of my report this year. As many people face considerable worries regarding job security or financial concerns which may impact on housing issues and family matters, then it is not surprising that this can result in heightened levels of stress and tension. As individuals, how do we deal with this? Are there services and support mechanisms that we can access? Do we feel free to say to family, friends or colleagues that we need help? My report will show some of the intelligence we have about the state of mental health locally, and how people feel about how they can cope with issues when they arise, what approaches they have to increase personal resilience, what services we have in place to address needs and the impact on physical health. These range from working with employers through our 'Positive Assets' and 'Mindful Employer' programmes to 'Mental Health First Aid' training, 'Social Prescribing' and 'Arts in Health'." - Wendy Richardson

Download the 2011 report here

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DPH Annual Report 2010 - "Retail Therapy''

"This year's Director of Public Health Annual Report focuses on our 'shop front' development in the brand new St Stephen's Shopping Centre in Hull, and 'making every contact count'. Our shop is called 'Health Central' and its name, branding and design layout are all down to the outcome of a consultation process with potential users, shoppers and health professionals... The overall vision was to make 'healthy choices, easier choices' by offering a convenient, highly accessible healthy lifestyle support facility in a central location which can enable people to combine their visits into the town centre whether here for work or for shopping. Health Central was designed to offer an innovative one-stop shop facilitating easy access to health and lifestyle services using a retail unit as a strategic enabler for health improvement.

Every day hospital frontline staff have millions of interactions with people that presents in itself an opportunity to promote healthy lifestyles which could make a positive difference to their health. These opportunities to engage with people through the delivery of a simple brief public health intervention are missed mainly due to a lack of awareness and confidence in addressing what are sometimes sensitive issues. This new approach, entitled 'Making Every Contact Count' is based on a competence framework that offers a simple, effective way of giving every NHS employee the knowledge and skills they need to support people in making healthier choices. This approach is extremely cost-effective too. For a relatively modest investment in training, the framework can help existing workforce to reach thousands more patients as they go about their daily jobs." - Wendy Richardson

Download the 2010 report here

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DPH Annual Report 2009 - "...For the Want of a Horseshoe Nail"

"'For want of a nail the shoe was lost, for want of a shoe the horse was lost, for want of a horse the rider was lost, for want of a rider the battle was lost, for want of a battle the kingdom was lost, and all for the want of a horseshoe nail.' This in no way indicates that our battle to improve health in Hull is lost. Just the opposite, as you will see from the examples of our work which are show cased in my report. The reason that this proverb struck such a chord with me is that it shows that small actions can have significant consequences. I feel that we have really started to make a difference to people's lives in the City and the biggest impact has been at grass roots level where we have got the detail right, put a series of interventions in place, up skilled and industrial scaled a local workforce to have a direct effect on health outcomes." - Wendy Richardson

Download the 2009 report here

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DPH Annual Report 2008 - "Healthy Ambitions in Hull"

"In October 2007 Lord Darzi launched his 'Next Stage Review' of the NHS which culminated in the publication of his report 'High Quality Care for All' in June 2008... NHS Hull is part of the Yorkshire and Humber Strategic Health Authority (SHA) which led this area of work on the 'Next Stage Review'. I was lucky enough to be asked to chair the 'Staying Healthy Regional Pathway Group'. 'Healthy Ambitions' is the outcome of the SHA's work on the 'Next Stage Review'... It brings together the work of a variety of people across the region focussing on best practice and up to the minute evidence. It provides a framework in which NHS Hull can, having assessed health needs, put together delivery plans which will ensure positive local health outcomes. In Hull we are championing the Healthy Ambitions approach by using the recommendations in the 'Staying Healthy' chapter as the main planks of our health improvement business plan. We believe that in order to improve public health and reduce health inequalities we need to focus on seeing individuals as a series of risks; hence our three key areas of work in the coming year will be around alcohol, obesity and tobacco. When I think about social marketing now, it is more about 'what buttons do we need to push to get through to this person' than the academic process of marketing theory. This gives us sufficient insight to really get under the skin of targeted groups and understand more fully that the same message will have to be adapted and delivered in a variety of ways to really mean something to everyone." - Wendy Richardson

Download the 2008 report here

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DPH Annual Report 2007 - "Getting to the Point"

"Sometimes reporting on health in Hull, people ask me, 'What is the point?' There is a view held by some that we cannot change the health outcomes for the City as individuals are free to make their own choices and that I am wasting my time. However, I am also now picking up clear messages from people who live in the City which indicate that people are now ready to listen and that we need to put appropriate support mechanisms in place which will incentivise whole communities to access the services they need to live longer and healthier lives. As a person who was born in this City, I am determined to show everyone that there is a point." - Wendy Richardson

Download the 2007 report here

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DPH Annual Report 2006 - "A Game of Chance: Closing the Gap on Inequalities"

"The role of the Director of Public Health may have changed through numerous reorganisations and since its first incumbent in 1873, but the task remains the same, of adding years to life and quality of life to years. Throughout the public health reports of the last century and beyond there is also a common theme that we must take a holistic approach to health improvement, recognising that everything in a person's life will ultimately impact on their health status. Just because you are born into difficult circumstances does not mean that there will not be chances to change the hand you have been dealt." Wendy Richardson

Download the 2006 report here

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DPH Annual Report 2005 - "A Window on Homelessness"

"I have adopted a new approach for this year's annual report. This is as a result of a personal experience whilst I was Acting Director of Public Health. I had an opportunity to meet with a young man whose story indicated many missed opportunities which might have diverted him from a life of drugs, alcohol and subsequent homelessness. This made me think hard about how we should use case studies to learn lessons that could influence the improvement of public health and the provision of health care services to impact on the wider community. My aim is to use the topic of homelessness and social exclusion to look at the wider public health issues that arise from looking at the real life experiences of homeless people. We should not forget though, that it is not just the homeless who are in a precarious situation." - Wendy Richardson

Download the 2005 report here

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