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Cambridge Public Health


In a recent policy statement, the UK Academy of Medical Sciences has called on the government to take bold action to enhance public health by investing in building a robust, evidence-based and integrated public health system.

The Academy emphasises that there has never been a more important time to invest in building a public health system that can respond to future health crises and address health inequalities.

Failure to seize this opportunity, according to the Academy, could have severe consequences with impacts on the physical and mental health of the population, but also on the economic prosperity of the UK as economic inactivity and pressures in the healthcare system increase.

The Academy’s call to action traces back to 2016 when it urged all stakeholders working in fields that affect human health to collaborate and work with the public to enhance the health of the population by 2040.

In this latest publication, the Academy of Medical Science Fellows, and other key experts, identified four priority areas for immediate action.

  1. Invest in health of the public research and practice through cross-government and cross-agency working to build an effective, evidence based and integrated public health system.
  2. Harness data and novel methods and technologies for health of the public research and practice
  3. Facilitate the use of health evidence for all policies.
  4. Develop the next generation of public health researchers and practitioners.

As a fellow of The Academy of Medical Sciences, Cambridge Public Health co-director Professor Carol Brayne contributed to both the original 2040 report and has been actively involved in tracking progress in achieving the report’s recommendations.

“We need to work together to improve population health and wellbeing for current and future generations reducing national and global inequality,” she said. “These are intimately linked to ecological sustainability.

"The Academy’s report has been valuable in helping a balance in favour of those in research investments, but we must maintain the scrutiny and pressure on those in decision-making roles, as well as those who implement policies related to research and its findings.”