10th anniversary of UKPHR’s Annual Public Health Practitioner Conference

UKPHR’s tenth Annual Practitioners’ Conference was a hugely successful affair in Birmingham on 12 November. Public health people came from all over the UK to be part of this anniversary event – and some special guests came along, too.

There were high quality speakers all day:

Wilma Reid, NHS Health Scotland, introduced her audience to the making of Public Health Scotland, due to launch next year and spoke of the leadership qualities public health practitioners demonstrate.

Professor David Evans, University of the South West of England, described the research he and his colleagues are carrying out to ascertain the value employers of the public health workforce attach to registration.

Dr Lisa McNally, Director of Public Health Sandwell, wowed her audience with her inspirational guide on how to make an impact.

And in a dozen workshops across the day, dedicated presenters imparted great learning to their audiences on subjects as diverse as assessing portfolios, engaging with the provider workforce, personal resilience and Salisbury’s response to the Novichok attack.

The day was all about celebrating and learning. And it was aided by special guests Mala Rao OBE and Jenny Griffiths OBE, who were there at the beginning when practitioner registration was launched. Both spoke of how proud and impressed they were with developments in practitioner registration since then and urged practitioners to lead from the front on such pressing societal issues as health inequalities and the climate emergency and the potentially adverse health impacts of these.

Viv Speller, UKPHR’s Vice Chair, chaired the Conference all day and said of her experience:

“It has been a brilliant day, filled with so many valuable and unforgettable moments. I was delighted to welcome Mala and Jenny because I worked with them both ten years ago when the register for practitioners was being set up. I was impressed by the speakers and workshop presenters and the organisers of the day, including the venue staff of The Studio, Birmingham. Like many others present, I had a little tear in my eye when the late Allison Thorpe’s daughter Teryn and son Chris stepped forward to present the award named in memory and honour of their mother – and said a few moving words about how much the creation of this award meant to the family.”