Category Archives: Physical Activity, Oral Health

Going the Distance: Exercise professionals in the wider public health workforce

By Royal Society for Public Health (2018)

This report, written with ukactive, explores how fitness professionals can play an enhanced role in supporting the public’s health. It calls for GP drop-in and smoking cessation services inside gyms and leisure centres to help ease pressure on local health facilities and improve access to health improvement services.

Click here to view this report

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Physical activity and the environment

by NICE (2018)

This guideline covers how to improve the physical environment to encourage and support physical activity. The aim is to increase the general population’s physical activity levels. The recommendations in this guideline should be read alongside NICE’s guideline on physical activity: walking and cycling.

Recommendations

This guideline includes recommendations on:
•strategies, policies and plans to increase physical activity in the local environment
•active travel
•public open spaces
•buildings
•schools

Click here to view this guidance

A systematic review of economic evaluations of local authority commissioned preventative public health interventions in overweight and obesity, physical inactivity, alcohol and illicit drugs use and smoking cessation in the United Kingdom

White, P. et al. Journal of Public Health, 2018, doi.org/10.1093/pubmed/fdy026

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Abstract
Background
Since 2013, local authorities in England have been responsible for commissioning preventative public health interventions. The aim of this systematic review was to support commissioning by collating published data on economic evaluations and modelling of local authority commissioned public health preventative interventions in the UK.

Methods
Following the PRISMA protocol, we searched for economic evaluations of preventative intervention studies in four different areas: overweight and obesity, physical inactivity, alcohol and illicit drugs use and smoking cessation. The systematic review identified studies between January 1994 and February 2015, using five databases. We synthesized the studies to identify the key methods and examined results of the economic evaluations.

Results
The majority of the evaluations related to cost-effectiveness, rather than cost-benefit analyses or cost-utility analyses. These analyses found preventative interventions to be cost effective, though the context of the interventions differed between the studies.

Conclusions
Preventative public health interventions in general are cost-effective. There is a need for further studies to support justification of continued and/or increased funding for public health interventions. There is much variation between the types of economically evaluated preventative interventions in our review. Broader studies incorporating different contexts may help support funding for local authority-sponsored public health initiatives.

Tackling multiple unhealthy risk factors: emerging lessons from practice

By The King’s Fund (2018)

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  • Previous research by The King’s Fund has shown that unhealthy behaviours cluster in the population. Around seven in ten adults do not follow guidelines on tobacco use, alcohol consumption, healthy diet or physical activity, yet most behaviour change services address these behaviours separately, not reflecting the reality of people’s lives.
  • This report shares learning and insight from services that are using innovative ways to address the problem of multiple unhealthy risk factors in their populations. It draws on interviews and information from eight case studies in local authorities and the NHS and updates the evidence base on tackling multiple unhealthy risk factors.
  • Most services included in the report are local authority led and are integrated health and wellbeing services. These provide behavioural advice and support to people across a range of different behaviours, including smoking, weight management and physical activity.
  • The NHS is also addressing multiple unhealthy behaviours. We set out learning from two hospitals supporting individuals with multiple risk factors.
  • The evidence for these behaviour change services to draw on, in the context of multiple unhealthy risk factors, remains limited. These services are in a position to develop the evidence base on how best to address multiple unhealthy behaviours.
  • The report makes recommendations on how services can develop and share evidence, and for how the Department of Health and Social Care and Public Health England can support further innovation in such services.

Urban green space interventions and health

By WHO (2017)

This report aims to fill the knowledge gap on the benefits of urban green spaces. It outlines the results of an evidence review and an assessment of local case studies on urban green space interventions, and finds that increasing or improving urban green space can deliver positive health, social and environmental outcomes for all population groups, particularly among lower socioeconomic status groups. It highlights the need to include more health and equity outcomes in studies on green space interventions in future.

Click here to view this report

Green space and health

By Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology (POST) (2016)

A range of bodies, including government agencies, have promoted the possible physical and mental health benefits of access to green space. This briefing summarises the evidence for physical and mental health benefits from contact with nature, such as reducing rates of non-communicable diseases, and the challenges for urban green spaces.

Click here to view this briefing

Public health transformation three years on: extending influence to promote health and wellbeing

By Local Government Association (2016)

This compilation of case studies shows how local authorities continue to make progress on improving health and wellbeing and tackling health inequalities since public health was formally transferred from the NHS in April 2013. These case studies were chosen because they show a range of ways in which public health in councils is approaching its new roles. They include councils spread across England, covering both rural and urban environments and with varying degrees of deprivation and affluence.

Click here to view these case studies