Today I am publishing a consultation document, “Healthy Lives, Healthy People: Consultation on the funding and commissioning routes for public health”, seeking views on proposals that were initially outlined in the White Paper “Healthy Lives, Healthy People: Our Strategy for public health in England” (Cm7985).
We are consulting on proposals for the commissioning and funding arrangements for delivery of public health services in the future. The consultation also asks questions about how the Department should implement some of our proposals.
The White Paper described a new era for public health, with a higher priority and dedicated resources. There will be ring-fenced public health funding from within the overall NHS budget. Local authorities will have a new role in improving the health and well-being of their population as part of a new system with localism at its heart and devolved responsibilities, freedoms and funding.
Directors of Public Health will be the strategic leaders for public health and reducing health inequalities in local communities, working in partnership with the local NHS and across the public, private and voluntary sectors. There will also be a new, dedicated, professional public health service—Public Health England—that will be part of the Department of Health.
This consultation is an opportunity to collect the views of public health professionals, NHS commissioners, local authorities, service providers—particularly the voluntary and independent sector—and all other interested parties.
The consultation will close at the end of March 2011.
The document has been placed in the Library. Copies are available to hon. Members from the Vote Office and to noble Lords from the Printed Paper Office.