Health as the new wealth: the NHS’s role in economic and social recovery

Gain a deeper understanding of the links between health and economic growth.

21 September 2020

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Health services have a vital role to play in the wider recovery and rebuilding of our local economies and communities – driving up prosperity, population health and wellbeing – in the wake of COVID-19.

This will involve transforming public service planning and delivery throughout a time of unprecedented economic and social disruption – pushing the service to understand its impact and value as local anchor organisations well beyond traditional sectoral boundaries. It will also mean using the system approach now emerging to drive up population health and wellbeing.

The health service’s crucial role in the economic and social recovery is explored within this NHS Reset strand report.

The report highlights the strength of the links between health and growth, outlines a five-point plan for every system to build on to maximise their local impact and influence and showcases innovative practice which is supporting lasting local change.

The five-point plan identifies steps we believe the NHS can take in every local economy. We recommend:

  • Developing an anchor network across all health and care bodies within the system footprint
  • Making an explicit commitment to fill existing health and care vacancies with local people
  • Embedding health and care within national and local regeneration planning
  • Proposing a Civic Restoration Strategy
  • Convening industry leaders to source potential new local supply chains

The report also makes recommendations for national government and systems to support this work.

If you would like to discuss how you could develop a similar approach locally, please get in touch with Michael Wood, the NHS Confederation’s health of health economic partnerships, at