EPUK’s take on the Department of Health Vision
We have long called for air pollution to be tackled at source, a “prevention over cure” approach. The Department of Health and Social Care (DoHSC) published its vision for improving health on 5 November 2018. The underlying theme of this paper echoes this approach, and recognises that it is better, where possible, to try to prevent people becoming ill than to concentrate most (if not all) efforts on treatment when they are already ill.
There is much in this document that is to be welcomed, and we look forward to working with those in the health field to build on these ideas. However, the document disappoints in its lack of ambition on air pollution. Ambient air pollution is recognised as one of the major public health challenges facing society today, eclipsing active smoking, alcohol and obesity and, arguably, second only to climate change, and yet it merits little more than a page in the whole vision.
For more information about this, and other issues, please see our response to the DoHSC: