Our home is the ‘health setting’ for most, if not all, of our life. Poor housing, however, is estimated to cost the NHS at least £2bn per annum. The NHS and local social care ambitions to enable ‘care closer to home’ cannot be achieved if homes do not offer a healthy environment.
The aim of this resource is to better equip local decision makers and practitioners to improve health and wellbeing and reduce health inequalities by:
- Promoting a better understanding of the relationship between the home environment and health and wellbeing and which part/s of the population may be most at risk.
- Informing local discussions about the options to address housing issues as a means to improve health and wellbeing, and reducing health inequalities.
The development of the resource was led by the CIEH, drawing on an academic review of the evidence, and the input of an expert reference group. It was supported Public Health England to build capacity in the local public health system. The resource features many case studies and real world examples from local authorities and other public bodies.
The resource can be used by anyone in a local area. It can inform:
- Joint Strategic Needs Assessments and Health and Wellbeing Strategies;
- Commissioning and the development of integrated health care, social care and housing services;
- Local housing strategies, plans and policies;
- Elected members in their discussions with local communities about improving health and wellbeing.
This resource is designed to help develop a better awareness of the link between housing and health outcomes/inequalities and an understanding of how housing can influence physical and mental health and well-being.
Homelessness also has a significant impact on health and wellbeing, and places demand on the NHS: a PHE commissioned resource to enable a local understanding of the health needs of this population is also available from Homeless Link.
A key aim of the resource is to help facilitate a dialogue between housing and health professionals through the development of a better understanding of the link between housing and health inequalities – and how more effective partnership working can make a real difference to the health and well-being of individuals and local communities.
If you have any questions contact:
Bob Mayho, Principal Policy Officer, CIEH Head Office Chadwick Court 15 Hatfields London SE1 8DJ
020 7827 5860