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Monday, March 19, 2018

New innovative strategy to help improve the quality of life of local people

An ambitious plan has been launched by the Council which aims to ensure that a range of measures are in place for West Lancashire residents to lead healthy and fulfilling lives.

The Council's new innovative Health and Wellbeing Strategy sets out a framework to improve the quality of life of residents by integrating health into wider services relating to housing, the environment, leisure, economic regeneration, planning and community safety.

Key issues facing the Borough include:

  • One in five residents in West Lancashire are living below the poverty line
  • 27% of West Lancashire's adult population and reception age children are categorised as either overweight or obese along with 33% of those aged 10-11
  • People living in the most deprived communities are twice as likely to die under the age of 75
  • High levels of youth unemployment and lower education attainment in certain parts of the Borough

Over the next three years the aim of the new strategy is to start to address these issues and the root causes of poor health through better use of resources and by ensuring Council policies promote health improvement.

To achieve this ambition the strategy covers four priority areas for the Council:

  • To ensure "across-the-board" action to improve health and wellbeing throughout the Borough
  • To take every opportunity to improve health and wellbeing through contacts with residents and in key settings such as schools and workplaces
  • To create and sustain an environment that helps people to make healthy choices
  • To support residents and communities to manage their health and build resilience

This will help to ensure that the Council is equipped to deliver the best conditions possible for local people to live fulfilling lives. Some of the key areas will include:

  • Working with partners to ensure the availability of apprenticeships, training and skills development opportunities
  • Planning to meet the changing needs of residents who live with limiting long-term illness or disability
  • Working with partners to tackle the upward trend in adult and childhood obesity
  • Promoting healthy environments to support people to live more physically active lives and encourage families to spend quality time together

The strategy also acknowledges the Council's desire to maximise the impact of investment by developing innovative and cohesive partnerships with key public sector organisations.

Councillor Kevin Wright, Portfolio Holder for Health and Wellbeing, said: "This exciting strategy can make a real difference to people's lives. The Council will work with partners to implement its recommendations to help improve local people's health."

Councillor Yvonne Gagen, Portfolio Holder for Leisure, said: "The Council already provides a number of leisure opportunities for West Lancashire residents to improve their health, fitness and general wellbeing. Through the strategy we will look to work with partners to increase these opportunities to help West Lancashire people lead healthier lives."

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