The NHS Confederation has teamed up with the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) to explore how the NHS, public services and local government can work together to build health across a whole health economy.
The review, part of IPPR’s Commission on Health and Prosperity, will consider how health and growth agendas can be combined in places. It will develop a bold, new and implementable reform proposition for building more collaborative, healthy and prosperous places.
Working in close collaboration with integrated care systems, the review will build on a body of existing NHS Confederation and IPPR evidence on health and prosperity in places.
Bolder and more strident approach to inequalities needed
The commission comes as a new IPPR report warns that the UK’s health inequalities and ineffective policies mean people are living shorter lives, with more years spent in poor health, and face greater barriers to staying in and getting on at work.
Responding to the report, Matthew Taylor, NHS Confederation chief executive and commission member, said:
“The pandemic has shown how deep health inequalities shape and cut across the lives and livelihoods of people across the country.
“Yet this is not new, disparities in health have not suddenly appeared, they have been part of the make-up of our society for decades. As millions of people now face the reality of a cost-of-living crisis there is an urgent need for a much bolder and more strident approach to tackling inequalities to create improved population health and stronger economic wellbeing.
“NHS leaders know all too well the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on people living in more deprived areas, and from ethnic minority backgrounds but systemic inequality was an issue long before the pandemic and it is vital that it is addressed once and for all.
Health and Prosperity Commission
The review with the IPPR forms part of a new cross-party Health and Prosperity Commission on how good health can be the foundation for a fair and prosperous economy.
Chaired by leading surgeon Lord Ara Darzi and former chief medical officer Dame Sally Davies, the commission aims to better understand the interconnections between health and the economy and to set out a blueprint to harness the full potential of better health for all.
Alongside NHS Confederation chief executive Matthew Taylor, other members of the commission include Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham and former chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Sir Oliver Letwin, along with senior figures from health, business, economics, and trade unions.
“We are delighted to be part of the Commission on Health and Prosperity and look forward to reflecting member insight," Matthew Taylor said.
The commission will be launched at an event on 28 April.