New report recommends increasing visibility of public health careers
Increasing visibility of public health as a career is one recommendation from two new reports looking at how to make sure that the public health workforce is ready to meet future challenges.
Public Health England's (PHE) report Fit for the Future - Public Health People looks at the capabilities and skills that public health professionals are likely to need and at how public health as a career can be made more attractive to a wider range of people.
It talks about targeting 16 to 18 year olds through youth health champion schemes, making use of opportunities to embed public health in careers advice and providing new or increased points of entry, such as apprenticeships in public health.
Forecasting for the next five years, the PHE report highlights five key themes important for developing the workforce for 2021, and provides a clear pathway towards achieving the goal.
The key themes, which are all equally important, are:
- creating an attractive career
- developing a stronger social movement for health
- building 21st-century skills
- strengthening systems-thinking and leadership
- ensuring resilience, flexibility and mobility
The PHE report says: "There is a sense of rapid social, technological, structural and financial change that means we will need an increasingly agile, flexible, multidisciplinary workforce that retains many current public health skills and develops new ones."
Looking further ahead
Another report from the Centre for Workforce Intelligence (CfWI) tackles the more difficult task of forecasting to 2035, based on extensive consultation with stakeholders.
Public Health Workforce of the Future: A 20-Year Perspective concludes that "the primary task for the [public health] system over the long term will be to monitor any changes in the system, understand their implications for the public health workforce, and if appropriate, make the necessary adjustments."
Want to know more?
Many roles in health, although not core public health roles, make a public health contribution. Find out more on our page about the wider public health workforce.