North West Hub
Who is the regional hub for?
For public health teams, commissioners, leaders, service providers, for healthcare leaders and voluntary care sector leaders with a special interest in applying behavioural science tools and techniques to improve health outcomes in the communities we serve.
Membership will connect you to public health commissioners, service providers, health improvement leads, voluntary sector, senior NHS clinicians, social science professions and academia.
Context and background
The new North West Behavioural Science Regional Hub (funded by HEE NW) will connect you to the growing evidence that utilising behavioural sciences in public health practice contributes to improving health outcomes and reducing health inequalities PHE outlined a series of recommendations to integrate behavioural science approaches and practice into public health commissioning and service delivery in order to improve health outcomes and reduce health inequalities. Improving people’s health: applying behavioural and social sciences 2018.
In May 2019 HEE NWPHPN, Champs Collaborative and PHE NW delivered a NW symposium to socialise the strategy across the public health, clinical and voluntary sector and to explore the rationale to expand the work through a professional development approach in partnership with the Behavioural Science & Public Health Network. Evaluation and feedback indicated that participants would benefit from and use a regional hub to build capacity and capability in behavioural and social science approaches and practice in public health work and services. Funding from non-recurrent innovation funds via HEE NW has been secured to establish the NW behavioural science hub.
Many public health challenges – including preventable diseases, smoking, and mental ill-health – are more often behavioural and sociological than medical in nature. The reason behind this is that they often arise from behaviours that are underpinned by social and structural determinants.
Evidence from behavioural science suggests that simple and easy ways of helping people to change their behaviour are the most effective. Whether it’s encouraging smokers to quit, increasing uptake of the NHS Health Check, making healthier food choices easier, or reducing the number of inappropriate antibiotic prescriptions, this evidence can help in understanding and therefore influencing behaviour change that promotes health, prevents disease, and reduces health inequalities. We must reach and be meaningful to people in the lives that they are leading.
Senior leadership support to the multi-professional steering group for the work is provided by Dr Sakthi Karunanithi, DPH, Lancashire County Council.
What will it provide?
- A community of learning to enable wider health and social care professionals and organisations to engage with and apply the insights, methodologies and knowledge of behavioural and social sciences into their work.
- Membership of the hub will provide you with access to free North West learning opportunities and events.
- Free membership to the BSPHN website, resources, national expertise and advice.
- Connecting to others working in this area of work regionally and nationally.
- The hub will support workforce development and new ways of working for those leading health behaviour work across the health and care system.
- The regional hub will be hosted and managed by the National Behavioural Science and Public Health Network (BHSPHN).
- BSPHN are national thought leaders and are supporting a number of regional behavioural science hubs across the country. Development of the NW regional hub is a collaborative between PHE North West and HEE North West working with key partners across the system.