Public Health England (PHE) has published its strategy for 2020 to 2015. The document sets out the PHE's priorities for the next five years.
The agency plans to tackle health inequality, antimicrobial resistance, response to major incidents, the use of health technologies, and health promotion.
PHE has targeted action on inequalities in infant mortality, school readiness and childhood obesity; premature mortality among people with long-term and severe mental health problems; and the gap in smoking rates between the least and most deprived communities.
Key among the 2020-2025 priorities is greater use of technology in the delivery of health, to support “personalised public health and care at scale” and improve data capabilities and disease surveillance. A new national science campus with state-of-the-art facilities is to be established at PHE Harlow to drive greater use of health technology.
The strategy comes at a time when newly-released figures show there was no increase in life expectancy between 2017 and 2018 and the inequality gap in life expectancy increased significantly from 2011 to 2013 for both sexes. In 2015-17, the gap in life expectancy between the most and least deprived areas in England was nine years for males and six-seven years for females. The gap for years spent in good health was 19 years for males and females. The inequality gap in life expectancy has increased significantly since 2011-13 for both sexes.