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Improve public health by engaging with communities, NICE tells local authorities in England

14 April 2014 - 10:52am

Local authorities in England should be using social media and community activities to engage with local people and improve public health, says a briefing from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE).

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Use social media to get feedback, says NICE

Community engagement to improve health says local councils should be helping people to take control of their own health and wellbeing by encouraging them to get involved in decisions about health and social care services.

It also recommends that local authorities should:

  • run community workshops
  • consult with citizen panels
  • use social media to get feedback

Rachel Newton, CSP public affairs and policy officer for England, welcomed the briefing: ‘Community engagement is an important issue for physiotherapy. By getting involved in public engagement on health CSP members can link up with patients and service users, who are potentially our strongest advocates.

‘As a profession we have an opportunity to lead by example, by making sure that patients have a strong voice in how physiotherapy services are developed.’

The NICE briefing is directed at local authorities, including directors of public health, directors of adult social care and elected councillors.

Ms Newton added that physiotherapy staff could engage more with their communities by getting involved with local patient groups and voluntary organisations.

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