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Public Health Role Expanded Under New Boss

Jersey's Public Health team has been expanded under the leadership of new director Peter Bradley.

The directorate will work on addressing health inequalities, promoting healthier lifestyles, and protecting the island from future health hazards.

A bigger team of experts will be formed to give advice on all areas of public health, led by Jersey's new Director of Public Health.

Professor Peter Bradley says after being through the pandemic, they need to understand islanders' experience of health, so improvements can be made;

"It feels like the right time now to really focus on what is going to improve health in the future and begin to start looking ahead.  We really do need to understand the issues that need to be addressed.

Part of that is supporting colleagues develop health services, and also looking at further risks.  We have been through the pandemic, we want to be prepared for any other risks that come to the island in subsequent years.  To do that we have brought together all the expertise in Public Health that existed already  - but brought it together in one team so it offers a real hub of advice."

Professor Bradley took on the role of the Director of Public Health last month. He has been designated as Medical Officer of Health in law  He is a medically qualified doctor and has joined from Public Health England.

He will become the chair of STAC (Scientific and Technical Advisory Cell) from next week, advising government on the Covid-19 pandemic.  

He will take the place of Patrick Armstrong, who has led the weekly or fortnightly meetings that consider health issues and make recommendations to Ministers.

“I have been a member of STAC since I started in post and so have had the opportunity to see at first hand the great work that goes into informing Government decisions on the pandemic response. I’m extremely grateful for the work of Mr Armstrong, who has done an exemplary job as Chair during what has been a very challenging time."

Dr Ivan Muscat will continue to be Deputy Medical Officer of Health, leading on communicable disease control and the ongoing public health response to Covid-19.

Dr Patrick Armstrong has been chairing STAC since it formed last year

Health Minister Deputy Richard Renouf says he is delighted by the function of the directorate is being strengthened 'to drive forward the vital work of public health in Jersey'.

“Professor Bradley’s appointment updates the role of Director of Public Health to accord with the modern requirements of the British Faculty of Public Health, whilst maintaining the designation of Medical Officer of Health in law, which is unchanged from Dr Turnbull and her predecessors.

The expanded public health function will receive additional funding as part of the Jersey Care Model to support prevention and early intervention, allowing Islanders to keep well and manage disease at an early stage.

I would like to welcome Professor Bradley as the new Chair of STAC. Mr Armstrong stepped forward at a time when more of the focus was on secondary care, including the clinical treatment of COVID and the establishment of the Nightingale Hospital. As we evolve our response to the pandemic, I welcome the change to a public health focus. I would like to express my sincere gratitude to Mr Armstrong for his dedication and commitment as Chair throughout the emergency response.”

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