14 Mar 2023 Local public health grant allocations confirmed: Food Active response
The government have today published the allocations for the public health grant for 2023-24, which provides local authorities in England with the funding required to undertake various public health fundctions.
Our Programme Lead, Nicola Calder responds:
“With just 2 weeks until the end of the financial year, local authorities have today finally received confirmation of their public health budgets for 2023-24. The overall package includes a 5% rise from last year, amounting to £3.529bn to be invested to fund vital preventative work to support communities, including promoting healthy weight in children, adults and families.
The government have a key focus on reinvigorating the workforce, stabilising the economy and putting the NHS on a firmer footing. The relatively small uplift in the public health grant allocation for 2023-24 reflects the government’s failure to recognise the role good health plays in supporting these priorities. Local public health functions play a crucial role in preventing long-term health conditions and an unhealthy workforce can negatively impact our economy and wider society; through lost productivity, increased long-term sickness, a reduction in income tax receipts and finally; places increasing pressures on the NHS.
Going forward, we want to see greater investment in local public health provision and a reversal of the devasting cuts the sector has seen over the last decade. We also call on the government to announce the grant allocations earlier to allow public health teams sufficient time to plan and manage their resources for the year ahead.”