20 April 2017

The Health of Bristol, 1948-2013: Public Health from Local Authority to NHS and Back Again

Who has been responsible for the health of the people of Bristol? How has that responsibility changed since the foundation of the NHS? And what do we know about the impact on the health of the population?

Three key dates are 1948, 1974 and 2013.

The establishment of the NHS in 1948 led to major changes in the public health role of the city of Bristol.

Then in 1974 public health responsibilities were transferred from local authorities to the NHS; some historians say public health lost its way for a time after this.

In 2013 public health was transferred back from the NHS to the local authority.

Until 1974 the medical officer of health produced an annual report on the health of the city.

Between 1974 and 2013 there were continual changes in NHS organisational structures and the location of public health within the NHS; during this period the extent to which the health of the population was publicly reported on was highly variable.

This seminar will scope what we know about the health of Bristol over period 1948 – 2013 and explore how we can piece together the impact of local public health authorities on the health of the people of Bristol during this time of enormous social, economic and organisational change.

Speaker: David Evans is Professor in Health Services Research at UWE, Bristol

This is a UWE Regional History Centre talk.