RCPCH responds to jointly published public health priorities for Scotland

The Scottish Government and COSLA have jointly published public health priorities for Scotland, aimed at focussing action across the public sector and voluntary sector and in communities.

The priorities are the first milestone in a wider reform of public health.

Responding to the public health priorities for Scotland, Professor Steve Turner, Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health Officer for Scotland said:

 “Child health in Scotland ranks among the worst in Western Europe, with an alarming gap in outcomes between children growing up in the least and most affluent areas.

"A focus on public health and prevention is therefore crucial, both to tackle unacceptable health inequalities and ensure the healthiest start in life for all Scotland’s children. The announcement from Scottish Government of six new public health priorities is hugely encouraging, since all are relevant to child health in particular the focus on early years, mental health, obesity and substance misuse. An effective child and young person health and wellbeing strategy will lead to a sustainable, inclusive economy.

"We share Scottish Government’s vision that Scotland should be the best place in the world for a child to grow up. However, this can only be achieved through a health system that meets the need of every child and young person, and a child perspective central to Government policy-making. These priorities are a step in the right direction, and we look forward to working closely with Scottish Government to achieve this vision”.