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Public Health

London / KSS Specialty School of Public Health

Welcome to public health training in London, Kent, Surrey and Sussex.

Public health is an exciting discipline of growing importance nationally and globally. It is increasingly realised that meaningful improvement of health and reduction of health inequalities requires a broad population based approach which integrates health sector interventions with those from many other spheres of human influence (political, economic, communities, social, educational, environmental and others).

We appoint trainees – Specialty Registrars (StRs) – who come from both medical and non-medical backgrounds. For the purposes of recruitment and training we do not distinguish between the two groups; all of you will pursue the same curriculum, have access to the same training opportunities and be subject to the same processes of assessment.

Public Health (PH) is the “science and art of preventing disease, prolonging life and promoting health through the organised efforts of society” (Atchison).
The PH approach is:

  • population based
  • emphasises collective responsibility for health promotion, health protection and disease prevention
  • recognises the key role of the state, and thus the underlying socioeconomic and wider determinants of health, as well as disease
  • emphasises partnership with all those who contribute to the health of the population, and thus not only works with the NHS but with all those involved with wellbeing.

The Faculty of Public Health (FPH) defines three broad domains of PH specialist practise: health improvement, improving services and health protection.

Those working to contribute to the health of the population generally use a broad based approach, and work within many sectors of society. The NHS has only a relatively small role in the delivery of the totality of PH. However PH specialists are primarily employed within the NHS and public sector.

Higher specialist training in PH is organised and commissioned from within the London Deanery, which is responsible for PH training on behalf of itself as well as the Kent, Surrey and Sussex Deanery. The mission of the London Deanery is to “improve the quality of patient care by ensuring the supply of doctors and dentists who are educated, trained and motivated to play their part in a first class modern health service.” However the remit of PH training goes well beyond that of “patient care” and is unique within the Deanery in that it recruits and trains graduates from both medical and non-medical backgrounds.

For further information on public health training take a look at this excellent summary from the Faculty of Public Health, specialising in the “bigger picture”.