Unhealthy lifestyles - physical inactivity, unhealthy diet, tobacco use and harmful use of alcohol - all increase the risk of developing and dying from diseases like cardiovascular disease, cancer and chronic respiratory diseases. Healthy lifestyle choices can prevent up to 80% of these diseases and reduce the risk of premature death. Encouraging and supporting people to make the best choices about their health can make a real difference to people’s quality of life.
The county council has a statutory duty to take appropriate steps to improve the health of people living in Leicestershire and currently commissions a number of services (such as weight management support and targeted physical activity), as well as providing some in-house services (such as smoking cessation) all of which are aimed at preventing diseases by tackling the key lifestyle risk factors - smoking, physical inactivity, and poor diet. These services currently operate separately, however approximately 25% of the adult population engages in combinations of 3 to 4 such unhealthy behaviours.
A more coordinated, integrated approach to lifestyle services would mean that people accessing one service could also be offered other lifestyle advice where appropriate, thus improving access, avoiding duplication of effort and providing a more holistic, person-centred service.
The council also has an ongoing need to make financial savings in all service areas. By joining services up better, we think we can offer a service that is effective but will also save around £65,000.
The consultation ran from 14 June - 25 Jul