The Health and Social Care Act 2012 made improving the health and wellbeing of England's population the concern of local authorities. Along with other local authorities in England, Newcastle now has a health and wellbeing board, through which it must take appropriate steps to benefit the people in their area. View our Public Health webpage.
To try and achieve improvements in public health, the emphasis is now on partnership working, underpinned by an evidence-based assessment of local needs - the Joint Strategic Needs Assessment.
Within the context of the changes, the Public Health Outcomes Framework (PHOF) is an important document. Published by the Department of Health it sets out priorities for public health and health improvement in England. View a copy of the summary document (pdf 168 kb). For more detailed information go to Gov.uk
The framework focuses on two high-level outcomes:
- Increased life expectancy,
- Reduced differences in life expectancy - and healthy life expectancy - between communities
These outcomes are to be achieved through focussing on indicators contained in four domains:
- Improving the wider determinants of health
- Health improvement
- Health protection
- Healthcare, public health and preventing premature mortality
Within the delivery of the PHOF by health and wellbeing boards the value of the work of Trading Standards can be demonstrated by utilising the indicators contained within the PHOF.
Domain 1: Improving the wider determinants of health
Objective: Improvements against wider factors that affect health and wellbeing and health inequality. Examples of the indicators that the Trading Standards service can influence under this domain include: pupil absence, first time entrants to the youth justice system and older persons perceptions of community safety. The service can assist in these areas by delivering the following work:
- Work to reduce the availability of age restricted products such as alcohol and fireworks to young people can have a bearing on their school attendance and influence older person's perception of community safety. The number of test purchase visits can therefore be measurable indicators. View our test purchasing webpage.
- Work to protect consumers from the unwanted attentions of 'loan sharks', by taking effective action against those who target them, can also make consumers feel safer. This can be a crime reduction issue, but it can also impact on public health, as victims can suffer violence and stress, leading to ill health. View our illegal moneylending webpage.
- Work to protect vulnerable individuals from scams and doorstep crime, by taking effective action against those who prey on them, can also make older people feel safer. This can be a crime reduction issue, but it can also impact on public health, as victims of crime can suffer stress, leading to ill health. View our Doorstep Crime webpage. View our No Cold Calling Zones webpage.
Domain 2: Health Improvement
Objective: People are helped to live healthy lifestyles, make healthy choices and reduce health inequalities. Within this domain the Service can perhaps make the widest impact, as many indicators have a trading standards' dimension.
- Removing unsafe products from the marketplace can prevent injuries among all age groups. View our product safety webpage
- Advice on buying safe nursery goods and toys can reduce hospital admissions for babies and young children. View our child safety webpage
- Proactive work to assess the safety of products through screen testing and sampling can be a good measure of work done in this respect,
- Participation in campaigns run by local safety partnerships can also be used as a measure of work carried out be officers,
- The work of TSO's in relation to tobacco control contributes to reducing the levels of smoking in all age groups.View our tobacco webpage
- Controlling the access of under-18's to alcohol, tobacco and sunbeds can influence cancer rates in later life. View our Sunbeds webpage.
- Control of the supply of alcohol to under 18's can also impact on rates of teenage pregnancy.
Domain 3: Health Protection
Objective: The population's health is protected from major influences and other threats, while reducing health inequalities. This domain is mostly concerned with indicators outside the remit of the Trading Standards service, such as vaccination rates. However it could be argued that by reducing the availability of alcohol to under 18's, TSO's contribute to reducing issues around sexual health.
Domain 4: Healthcare, public health and preventing premature mortality
Objective: Reduced numbers of people living with preventable ill health and dying prematurely, while reducing the gap between communities. This is another domain in which the Trading Standards service can have an effect on a number of indicators, as it includes mortality from cancer.
- Work in relation to age-restricted products and tobacco control can influence cancer diagnoses,
- Initiatives such as electric-blanket testing can enable older people to keep warm and reduce winter deaths. The number of electric blankets tested and the results of those tests can be used as an indicator of work carried out. Go to our webpage View our electric blanket campaign webpage.
For further information, please contact the Trading Standards Service, Directorate of Operations and Regulatory Services, City of Newcastle upon Tyne, Civic Centre, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 8QH. Phone: 0191 2116121