Director of Public Health Report published on World Mental Health Day (10 October)
Everyone needs to work together to promote good mental wellbeing - that’s the message from this year’s Gloucestershire Director of Public Health report.
‘Leading the way to wellbeing’ the Director of Public Health’s 2017/18 report, published today, talks about the role of organisations across Gloucestershire in improving mental wellbeing for everyone and outlines what each and every one of us can do to help along the way.
The publication coincides with the World Health Organisation’s, World Mental Health Day (10 October), which each year helps to raise awareness of mental health related issues around the world.
Mental wellbeing can be difficult to define. Throughout the report Gloucestershire people talk about what mental health means to them, and Sarah Scott, director of public health at Gloucestershire County Council sets out five clear ways to better mental wellbeing in the county:
- Promoting good health and wellbeing from the earliest age
- Helping people build the five ways to wellbeing into their everyday lives
- Creating and sustaining the conditions for good mental wellbeing
- Working in partnership to prevent self-harm and suicide
- Building mental health friendly communities and workforces
The report is illustrated with examples of how the county council is working towards the five priorities; from mental health champion schools; building the ‘five ways to wellbeing’ in to school life - to training that helps people spot the signs of suicide risk and gives them the confidence to respond.
Local partner projects also feature in the report. These include Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust’s Natural Health Service with weekly conservation groups and Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) funded support at the Cavern – out of hours support for people who need to talk to in a safe and supportive space.
Also showcased in the report is Gloucestershire’s actions for better mental wellbeing commitment; GloW. Organisations are encouraged to sign up to the commitment and pledge actions to improve mental wellness.
Sarah Scott, director of public health at Gloucestershire County Council said: “I’m proud of the work we’ve done together in Gloucestershire to support mental wellbeing. I want this report to help people see that we all have a part to play in making Gloucestershire a better place to live and encourage more people to join us.
"My report isn’t just about the activity that’s happening now but also about what we can do in the future. Some people in the county are more likely to suffer with poor mental wellbeing because of their start in life or where they live and it’s my ambition to help put an end to that."
Cllr Tim Harman, cabinet member for public health at Gloucestershire County Council said:
"I’d like to thank Sarah for an insightful and inspiring report that rallies us all in Gloucestershire to work together and make a difference in each others lives. This is an important and emotive subject, and one that is very important to me and my colleagues."
About the DPH report:
The Director of Public Health Annual Report is a professional statement on the health and wellbeing of Gloucestershire’s population and includes independent recommendations on actions to improve and protect health. ‘Public mental health’ is the responsibility of the county council and is about promoting good mental health and wellbeing and preventing mental illness, self-harm and suicide. Last year’s report focussed on children and families’ health and this year’s report picks up on some of that work with a priority to promote good mental health and wellbeing from the earliest age.