Government announce Public Health England replacement - the Office for Health Promotion
Today the Government announced that the new Office for Health Promotion will replace Public Health England.
The Office for Health Promotion will lead national efforts to improve and level up the health of the nation by tackling obesity, improving mental health and promoting physical activity.
The Office will recruit an expert lead who will report jointly into the Health Secretary and the Chief Medical Officer, Chris Whitty. The Office’s remit will be to systematically tackle the top preventable risk factors causing death and ill health in the UK, by designing, implementing and tracking delivery policy across government. It will bring together a range of skills to lead a new era of public health polices, leveraging modern digital tools, data and actuarial science and delivery experts.
In response, Professor Graham MacGregor, Chair of Action on Sugar and Action on Salt, said: “The abrupt announcement that Public Health England were to be disbanded last year should have been the time to finally ensure that public health policy received the independent oversight and transparency it so desperately needed. It is interesting to learn today that, instead, public health will return to the Department of Health and Social Care, especially given their failed attempt with the reformulation policies intended to improve the quality of food for all1. We are pleased however that the CMO’s office will have oversight of the new Office for Health Promotion, as they understand the multiple complexities of obesity.
It is vital that the Office for Health Promotion is well funded, works across a range of Government departments, and survives longer than Public Health England did. Given the poor progress seen with obesity prevention in recent years, they must urgently implement all measures in the Childhood Obesity Plan, along with robust reformulation programmes.”