Agenda item

A discussion to be led by the Chief Officer for Communities, Public Health, Environment and Prosperity to include:


·       Intelligence from the Joint Strategic Needs Assessment – a brief overview of the impact

·       Review of the Joint Health and Wellbeing Strategy – areas include Wellbeing, Mental health, physical activity and Local health inequalities.

·       Learning from Response – from all Board Members

·       What positives have come out of the emergency – Partnership working, Agile use of the BCF, Hospital discharge arrangements, Community response and wider social capital,     Co-production and New approaches to governance through online platforms

·       Public Protection Priorities.




The Board received a presentation from the Chief Officer for Communities, Public Health, Environment and Prosperity on the priorities for recovery, including: (a copy of the presentation is attached to these minutes)


Impact of Covid-19 in Devon


·       health and care impact: 1,208 confirmed cases and 211 deaths; impact of lockdown on mental health, loneliness and general wellbeing;

·       Confirmed cases and deaths per 100,000 population by each district area;

·       UK health services impact: access to services, delivery of secondary care, hospital admissions, mental health services, adult social care, and early help services;

·       UK Health Behaviours impact on drinking, smoking, physical activity and diet;

·       Economic impact – number of people furloughed, increase in job seekers allowance, decline in spending, household debt, affecting certain communities more, educational attainment, job security, household income and work environment;

·       Rates of unemployment – increase in claimant count rate above national average and small tourist towns most affected;

·       UK social impact – loneliness and isolation, social cohesion increased, domestic violence and abuse, social disorder and safeguarding issues;

·       Devon Environmental Impact – fall in road transport, drop in fuel consumption, drop in carbon emissions by 23%; and,

·       The vast increase in use of cycling during lockdown.


Joint Health and Wellbeing Strategy - Vision and Priorities


·       Is the JHWS still fit for purpose?

·       Wider determinants of health and mental health – lack of employment and loneliness effects;

·       Impact on young people, education and wider benefits of school, social interaction etc (priority 2c)

·       Infectious diseases are very real and important – priority 4, talking about maximising/encouraging immunisation programmes and promoting benefits of vaccinations (flu/pneumonia and child vaccines) – add – promoting public health interventions to prevent the spread of infectious disease


Learning from Covid-19 response


·       Healthwatch report – this would contribute to discussions on learnings from Covid-19 – NP will pass on to Members once produced;

·       Physical health and weight a factor for Covid-19 – it was important to increase the levels of exercise amongst the population;

·       Public services had pulled together through the pandemic and there had been more joined up and partnership working – it was important to ensure this continued beyond the pandemic;

·       Clear national messaging required – there had been some confusion;

·       Speed and efficiency of local authorities, communities and voluntary groups that came together and set up local community support, to help coordinate support for local residents;

·       the national approach made action in localities difficult at times - further work was needed to look at care homes and vulnerable groups;

·       at times there was a conflict in dynamics between the national directive and local work e.g. volunteering approach;

·       how technology had been used throughout Covid-19 – including online virtual meetings; but also health, local government, police and voluntary work had continued during the pandemic through the virtual world – this must continue moving forward; and,

·       Devon County Council had improved digital capabilities a lot in the last few years which had helped immensely moving through the pandemic.


Discussion points with Members included:


·       a lack of consistency across GP and NHS delivery for non-essential things; a clear and consistent strategy across Devon was required;

·       Cycling – this would likely tail off as people go back to work and don’t have as much time to go out cycling;

·       Impact of pandemic on voluntary and community sector as a whole?

·       Impact on social prescribing programmes and how they have adapted and utilised opportunities to work very differently during Covid-19;

·       Protective groups, impact on these groups?

·       Stages of Covid-19 – burnout was mentioned, this is a real danger as so many people have pushed beyond their normal limits to put Devon in a positive position – with a potential resurgence in autumn/winter, how do we support those people that have already worked so hard to give them some recovery time to avoid burnout if there is a second wave?;

·       Two positive trends around public participation and improving social cohesion, were these trends here to stay or will they likely revert to pre-pandemic levels; and,

·       the hardcopy info sheets newspaper published by DCC and police updating households about coronavirus, also includes information on contacting their GPs and NHS should they have any illnesses.



It was MOVED by Councillor Leadbetter, SECONDED by Cllr Parsons, and

RESOLVEDthat the presentation be noted and ‘promoting public health interventions to prevent the spread of infectious disease’ be added to priority 4 of the Joint Health and Wellbeing Strategy.


Supporting documents: