Research and analysis

Local leadership, new approaches: improving the health of local communities

How local authorities and health teams are working together to improve the health of local communities through prevention and early intervention.


Local leadership, new approaches: how new ways of working are helping to improve the health of local communities

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This report contributes some new insights into improving the health of local communities:

  1. it broadens out the idea of integration - health and social care working together can make a significant difference to people’s wellbeing, but there are other services and other stakeholders that also have a powerful contribution to make

  2. it focuses on implementation (integrating health and care, and putting policy into practice) and describes the experiences of people who deliver such services, and of people who use them

The report features 7 case studies. Each one describes a particular programme or close partnership between a local authority and local public health or health care teams, often with the additional support of the voluntary sector.

The examples are varied. They:

  • come from different parts of the country
  • are aimed at different sections of the population (children, working-age adults, older adults)
  • reflect different local priorities, from public health in schools to fuel poverty

Despite these differences, the case studies share some common themes:

  • joint programmes often build on existing relationships and a history of working together
  • people value programmes that are simple and convenient and are able to help with multiple problems
  • teams from different sectors value the opportunity of working together and the greater impact that they can have on residents’ wellbeing as a result