LGA slams public health budget and lack of clarity

Friday 4 May 2012

crowdLocal government leaders say councils should get more funding for public health than has been planned under the coalition's health reforms.

The Local Government Association (LGA) also wants greater local government involvement in the development of the distribution formula for public health funding and a public consultation on the way it is funded in future.

In January the government announced a £5.2bn budget for public health, representing about 4 per cent of the total health budget for England; £2.2bn of this would be distributed to local authorities.

The LGA said some of its members had raised concerns that the way allocations from the £2.2bn budget have been calculated leaves authorities with higher levels of deprivation with less money than they need. It wants allocations to reflect health need and health inequalities.

It added that local authorities are worried that £2.2bn is not enough to discharge their public health responsibilities and they do not understand why the Department of Health is retaining £3bn for centrally commissioned work.

The LGA also wants 'clarity on local authority statutory responsibilities with regard to public health'.

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