Headlines: September 14th, 1998

Special emphasis has been placed on joint working between the health service, local government, business and the voluntary sector, in the annual report of the Chief Medical Officer, Sir Kenneth Calman.Sir Kenneth said: “The key to the implementation of many improvements to the environment and health is through action at a local level, and much is already being done through ‘Local Agenda 21’ -a comprehensive action plan for sustainable development into the 21st Century.

“This aims to bring together local government, business, voluntary and community sectors to identify what their local communities want and need, and then to co-ordinate delivery by means of local resources, taking account of local interests. Their activities often deliver health benefits as well as environmental ones, and involvement in the partnerships and planning stimulates the development of a healthier community.

“The resources and the will needed to maintain and improve environmental health should not be underestimated, and can only be achieved by collaboration – individually, locally, nationally and internationally.

On the State of Public Health 1997 costs eighteen pounds 50 pence from The Stationery Office. An executive summary is available on the web at www.open.gov/doh/new.htm