Greenwich Health and Well-Being: Harnessing the Contribution of the Voluntary Sector

Our work with individuals, families and communities in Greenwich means that the voluntary, community and faith sector is a vital partner in contributing to the health and well-being of all residents. It therefore stands to reason that we play a key role in the development and implementation of an exciting new plan focused on Health and Well-Being of Greenwich residents: The Greenwich Health and Well-Being Strategy (2010 – 2015).

This plan has been developed jointly by the Council and NHS Greenwich and has been based largely on the recent findings of the Joint Strategic Needs Assessment (JSNA), an assessment of the Health and Well- Being needs of Greenwich residents.

The JSNA identified 7 conditions that are a priority for Greenwich, with their causes and the challenges they bring. The conditions are: heart disease and stroke, diabetes, cancers (especially lung, breast and bowel), mental health (depression & anxiety, dementia, conduct disorder in children), respiratory health (including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), bone and muscular health (including osteoporosis, falls and fractures), gastro intestinal health (peptic ulcers and cirrhosis).

In response the aim of the Greenwich Health and Well-Being Strategy is to improve the health and well-being of the whole Greenwich population and to close the health inequalities gap that exists within the borough. It has 10 objectives and 35 commitments which are intended to achieve these objectives.

The 10 Objectives within the Health and Well-Being Strategy

1.      Securing the best health and well-being for children and young people (including vulnerable children)

2.      Securing the best health and well-being for adults and older people (including vulnerable adults)

3.      Improving the health and well-being of the most disadvantaged

4.      Increasing life expectancy for men in Greenwich

5.      Promoting the health and well-being of new populations in Greenwich

6.      Ensuring public policy supports good health

7.      Making healthy choices easier

8.      Investing resources wisely and in partnership (commissioning & joint commissioning)

9.      Communicating with the public (social marketing)

10.  Developing the full potential of our workforce

Two year ‘action plans’ will accompany the plan and set out key actions against each commitment. The action plans will outline who is responsible for leading the actions, who else is involved, timescales, resources required and the outcomes that are to be improved.

The voluntary sector should play a role in carrying out these actions. It is expected that the strategy will help us not only to meet the needs of our users; but also to publicise and provide evidence of need for our services and activities. The Greenwich Health and Well-Being Strategy is currently in draft form. Please contact Pauline O’Hare at pauline.ohare@gavs.biz if you wish to have a copy or to comment on its current form.