HEALTH chief Valerie White has said “working in partnership” will be key to meeting Dumfries and Galloway’s public health challenges in the wake of covid.
The director of public health’s 22/23 report last week mentioned a range of challenges facing the region.
And the list included: an ageing population, a declining workforce, worsening life expectancy figures, widening health inequalities, a greater frequency of illnesses, child poverty and climate change.
She noted that child poverty was estimated to affect ‘one in four’ children across the region and revealed that the life expectancy of a baby girl born in Dumfries and Galloway in 2020 had fallen by nine months compared to a girl born in 2011.
Ms White said: “While it is easy to get disheartened by these figures, I firmly believe that by working in partnership across organisations and sectors and with our local communities we can face these challenges.”
The document also spelled out a number of strategies for working together.
These included: establishing health as a common goal, collaboration across sectors and society, focusing on a ‘wellbeing economy’ which serves ‘people and planet’ and empowering communities for better health and wellbeing through a ‘relentless’ focus on good health and prevention.
She added: “We have strong partnerships across our sectors and communities in Dumfries and Galloway and what we learned from the pandemic was that altogether we can tackle even the greatest of challenges.”