Celebrating NICE's 10th anniversary: our contribution to improving the public's health
Since 2005, when our public health programme was first set up, we have produced 19 pieces of guidance to help improve people's health, promote a healthier lifestyle and prevent disease. A further 18 are currently in development.
Our recommendations have covered a range of topics from preventing smoking among adults and children to preventing long-term sickness absence, increasing physical activity among children and improving maternal and child nutrition.
We have also covered more generic topics such as how to help people change their behaviour and how to get communities involved in improving people's health.
One piece of guidance - on obesity - links our clinical and public health work, covering everything from prevention right through to treatment. More guidance combining prevention and treatment will follow.
Adding public health to NICE's programme of work led to a name change - from National Institute for Clinical Excellence to National Institute for Health and Care Excellence. It also expanded our audience to include not only the NHS, but local authorities and a range of other organisations in the public, private, community and voluntary sectors.
Local authorities are responsible for a range of services that impact on people's health - such as education, housing, planning and social care - and, as such, are particularly important to our public health work.
The government is making it easier for joint working between local authorities and the NHS thanks to its white paper, ‘Strong and prosperous communities' and the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act 2007. Both have helped establish a new formal basis for them to work together to improve people's health and wellbeing.
Our public health recommendations will help them achieve this effectively.
As Public Health Excellence Centre Director, Professor Mike Kelly, said: “NICE public health guidance provides the NHS, and others whose actions affect the health of the public, with evidence-based recommendations which, when implemented, prevent disease and improve health.
“NICE has led the way scientifically and practically in finding cost-effective solutions to public health problems.”
‘1999-2009 A decade of excellence' is available at www.nice.org.uk/media/CC6/F8/ADecadeOfExcellence.pdf
Issued: 17 August 2010
This page was last updated: 20 April 2010