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Paths to public health and wellbeing: examples of local authority action in the South West

Local councils are addressing their public health responsibilities in a range of ways following the reforms introduced in April 2013. A key aspect of this work is the delivery of programmes and initiatives through partnerships and alliances within and outside council departments. A range of activity is emerging in new ways of working, providing valuable insights about the opportunities and challenges being addressed in local authorities as they embed and fulfil their extended role as public health bodies.

The case studies presented here give a snapshot of the diversity of work being delivered in the South West across the four domains of public health. Some of the case studies illustrate a focus on developing joint strategies and processes to provide a strong foundation for future work, others demonstrate emergency responses delivered in a newly integrated public health system, and several present innovative approaches to addressing specific health priorities.

A significant amount of public health work is being undertaken in local councils in the South West. The fourteen case studies presented in this document represent just a fraction of the activity underway.