Report of the Director of Public Health, Communities and Prosperity presenting the Public Health Annual Report 2021-22. The covering report with a summary is attached and the full report is available at - https://www.devonhealthandwellbeing.org.uk/aphr/2021-22/.
RESOLVED that the Annual Report of the Director of Public Health 2021-22, which focuses on the impact to Devon residents of COVID-19 and the economic crisis, be received and the recommendations contained therein be noted.
(Councillors Adams and Biederman attended in accordance with Standing Order 25(2) and spoke to this item).
The Cabinet considered the Report of the Director of Public Health, Communities and Prosperity presenting the Public Health Annual Report 2021-22. The full report was available at - https://www.devonhealthandwellbeing.org.uk/aphr/2021-22/.
The Director of Public Health had a statutory duty to write an annual report, and the Local Authority a statutory duty to publish it (section 73B  &  of the 2006 NHS Act, inserted by section 31 of the 2012 Health and Social Care Act). This enabled the Director of Public Health to make an independent judgement about the state of the health of the local population.
The Annual Public Health Report 21/22 was the current Director’s second Report in the capacity of Director of Public Health for the Council. This was the first annual report to be published in a digital format only, in recognition of the commitment to the climate change emergency.
The Report looked back over the past twelve months, describing how COVID-19 had continued to impact upon the lives of Devon residents and examined what living safely with Covid would look like. It further examined the impact of the ‘cost-of-living crisis’, driven by rising energy, fuel and food prices and inflation, and how this, like the pandemic was impacting on the poorest households in Devon and increasing health inequalities.
The Report stressed the need for the Local Authority to respond effectively to any additional pandemic waves as well as ensuring that the available resources were targeted at the most vulnerable households to help reduce the combined impact of the pandemic and ‘cost-of-living crisis’.
A number of recommendations were set out in the Report, as follows.
1. Public Health Devon continues to maintain a surveillance system to monitor local cases and outbreaks across settings to enable swift public health actions, working closely with our partners.
2. Public Health Devon continues to support NHS partners in the promotion and delivery of the COVID-19 vaccination programme, with a particular focus on addressing inequalities in uptake.
3. Public Health Devon works with NHS partners to ensure the learning from the delivery of the COVID-19 vaccination programme is embedded in the delivery of all routine vaccination programmes.
4. Further research should be commissioned to gain a greater understanding of food insecurity and fuel poverty in Devon, its impact and the arrangements to support people at greatest risk.
5. Increase in publicity to raise awareness and encourage eligible homeowners in Devon to access free energy efficiency improvements through Cosy Devon.
6. The Council continues to work with Government and local partners in the commissioning and delivery of schemes which mitigate some of the impacts of food and fuel insecurity, through funding within the Household Support Fund and Holiday Activities and Food programme.
7. Public Health Devon work collaboratively with colleagues from Education and children and young people service providers to explore the delivery of an enhanced health and wellbeing programme offer.
8. Local strategic partners should ... view the full minutes text for item 192