Standards/competences are currently under development for public health practice – that is for the individuals who spend the majority of their work/practice improving the health of populations, communities and groups (and through them the health of individuals). (These practitioners were identified by the English Chief Medical Officer as group 2 in his review of public health). Many practitioners have already been involved in the drafting of the standards/competences through workshops held across the UK. A consultation phase from June – September 2003 on the final draft of the standards/competences will allow many more people to participate in their development. If you are involved in public health practice, whatever your employing organisation, now is your opportunity to participate (see below). Relationship to the Standards for Specialist Practice This development follows on from, and builds on, the standards already developed for Specialist Practice in Public Health. In the development of the standards/competences of public health practice, the original Tripartite Steering Group has been joined by other relevant regulatory and professional bodies and associations to form a larger stakeholder group. The development work is funded by the four Government Health Departments and the education regulatory bodies. The project is managed by Skills for Health (formally Healthwork UK) – the Sector Skills Council for the Health Sector. Uses of the standards / competences The standards/competences can be used in a variety of different ways - strategically and operationally. These include:
- service development - workforce planning - producing job descriptions - informing personal development - designing education and training - designing qualification structures.
Part of the project is to identify the specific uses that will benefit people, organisations and partnerships in public health.