Health and Wellbeing Board Newsletter

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Spring Newsletter

MARCH 2021

COVID-19 - one of the greatest challenges we have ever faced

Since our last Health and Wellbeing Board newsletter in Summer 2020, the pandemic has continued to create unprecedented demands throughout West Sussex and across the nation.

Without doubt it has been one of the greatest challenges ever faced by public health, social care, the NHS as well as all our communities, and it continues to affect our daily lives in many ways.

However, there is light at the end of the tunnel with the arrival of the COVID-19 vaccines, which our NHS colleagues (Sussex Health and Care Partnership) are rolling out at great pace, working with Local Resilience Forum partners. The County Council is also supporting the Vaccination Programme.

As I have highlighted before, never has it been more important to work together and support each other, putting a ‘whole systems approach’ at the fore to help us through this difficult period, both locally and nationally. Our Board members and key systems leaders across the health and care system continue to maximise their collaborative strength, working together tirelessly to make the most effective use of combined resources to protect and support our residents and communities during these difficult times.

It would be impossible to do this without the determination, stamina, compassion and commitment of all our workforces, volunteers and communities and on behalf of the West Sussex Health and Wellbeing Board, I would like to express my sincere thanks to everyone throughout the county for looking after and caring for our residents during this time; your work and support has simply been outstanding. 

This edition includes updates from the Health and Wellbeing Board meetings held on 8 October 2020 and 28 January 2021, including;

  • tackling smoking together during the pandemic;
  • Creating Healthy and Sustainable Places: A Public Health and Sustainability Framework for West Sussex; and
  • the West Sussex Local Outbreak Engagement Board.

It also features the latest information on the West Sussex Joint Dementia Strategy and other key COVID-19 updates.  

We welcome your feedback on anything you have read in this newsletter. Please send your comments to Alison Thomson, Public Health Lead for Partnerships at

I hope you find this update both informative and interesting.

Best wishes

Amanda Jupp

Chairman, West Sussex Health and Wellbeing Board


Tackling Smoking Together

At the Health and Wellbeing Board meeting on 8 October 2020, the WSCC Public Health team updated on recent achievements from the Tobacco Control Strategy – endorsed by the Health and Wellbeing Board at their January 2019 meeting – and discussed the risk of greater impact from COVID-19 on health and income posed by smoking.

Board Members agreed to endorse the actions of the Smoke Free West Sussex Partnership, recognising the need to prioritise tackling smoking during the pandemic, and to commit to a Smoke Free West Sussex at an individual level, an organisational level and as part of the community. Actions to take forward include:



  • reviewing how workplace policies support employees who smoke to quit;
  • having smoke free buildings; and
  • using organisational communications to raise awareness of benefits of quitting and the support available.


  • implementing a "health in all policies" approach to tackling smoking; and
  • ensuring the opportunities that organisations use their roles to influence access to and use of tobacco, such as planning, licensing and during tendering and contracting with third parties.

To learn more about the Smoke Free West Sussex Partnership’s priority actions, visit the Smoke Free West Sussex Action Plan, for an interactive tool that monitors the progress made against these actions.

Creating Healthy and Sustainable Places: A Public Health and Sustainability Framework for West Sussex

At the Health and Wellbeing Board’s meeting on 28 January, the ‘Creating Healthy and Sustainable Places: A Public Health and Sustainability Framework for West Sussex’ was endorsed by the Board. The framework is a new policy for developers, investors, planners, service providers and decision makers, which maximises opportunities to create healthy and sustainable places across the county.

The framework was praised for being highly useful, influential and an excellent piece of work that brings together many elements associated with making place based decisions within the context of public health and sustainability. District and Borough Chief Executive Officer representatives on the Board emphasised that the framework will be used to develop local plans, community wellbeing policies and strategies across West Sussex. Board Members agreed that the Creating Healthy Places Framework is ambitious, collaborative and partnership-driven, and were keen to act collectively to take this work forward and make it part of core business. 

Read the full report here.

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West Sussex Local Outbreak Engagement Board (LOEB)

Dr Tony Hill, Interim Director of Public Health (DPH), provided an update to the Health and Wellbeing Board at their meeting on 28 January 2021 on the work of the West Sussex LOEB. The LOEB is a Member-led sub-group of the Health and Wellbeing Board and provides political ownership and public-facing engagement and communication for the COVID-19 pandemic. The Board meets monthly, with its next meeting scheduled for 11 March 2021.

Read the full report here.

West Sussex Joint Dementia Strategy

In partnership with the NHS West Sussex Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), West Sussex County Council formally launched the West Sussex Joint Dementia Strategy (2020 - 2023) in September 2020. District and Borough Councils and statutory, community and voluntary providers contributed to the strategy’s development, which includes direct input from people living with dementia as well as their families, friends and carers.

Building on the progress of the Dementia Framework 2014-19 and aiming to improve the lives of people affected by dementia in West Sussex, the strategy’s vision is for:

  • Access to a high-quality and timely diagnosis, with the individual and their carer receiving high quality, well-coordinated and compassionate care, support and information following diagnosis and throughout the person’s journey.
  • Support for the person to maintain their independence and enjoy a good quality of life for as long as possible, with a focus on the individual’s strengths.
  • People with dementia, and their families and carers, to be central to any processes or decision making, and wherever possible, helped to express their own needs and priorities.
  • Supportive communities, where people feel able to participate in community life without stigma.
  • Improved health and wellbeing of local people, to reduce the risk factors of dementia.
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Amanda Jupp, Cabinet Member for Adults and Health, said: “This new strategy now has a much wider focus than just on those living with dementia. It will aim to encourage businesses and services to become more dementia friendly, therefore building a community where people feel more confident and able to participate without stigma or anxiety.”

A Dementia Partnership Group has been formed, jointly chaired by the County Council and the CCG, and includes statutory, voluntary and community sector organisations. The Partnership Group, along with task and finish groups, are working together to drive through change in several key areas of focus identified in the strategy.

Keeping Track of COVID-19

COVID-19 related data is monitored on a daily basis by West Sussex County Council’s Public Health and Social Research Unit. This data, which includes statistics on case rates, positivity rates and deaths, is compiled into a PowerPoint slide deck and published weekly on the Council's website. The team have also created an interactive webpage of this data, which allows users to explore the numbers for their local area in more detail, alongside a mobile-friendly version for quick access to the key figures.

Screenshot of COVID data website

NHS COVID-19 Vaccination Programme

The NHS is leading the delivery of the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme across Sussex, working with Local Resilience Forum partners. The County Council is also supporting the vaccination programme as we work across communities to encourage everyone eligible to have their vaccination.

Roll-out of vaccinations continues to progress at great pace via vaccination centres, GP-led vaccination services (including a roving vaccination service providing jabs to care homes and people who are housebound), pharmacy-led services, and hospital hubs (now for second doses).

Across Sussex we have met the government target to offer the vaccination to everyone in the first four priority groups, and are now focussing on priority groups 5 and 6, and preparing to offer second doses.

Please visit the SHCP website for all the latest updates including Frequently asked questions, stakeholder briefings, and the latest data.

‘Keep West Sussex Safe’ campaign

The 'Keep West Sussex Safe' communication campaign, led by WSCC, encourages residents, businesses and communities to stay alert and follow government guidelines to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

In addition to promoting the key public health prevention messages on hand washing, social distancing and face coverings on various WSCC communication channels, campaign resources and materials have been made available for local businesses, communities, organisations and services to download. These materials, including posters and sample social media messages, can be used at a local level to encourage our residents and communities to help keep West Sussex safe and play their part in stopping the spread of the virus locally. 

Keep West Sussex Safe communication asset

Future Health and Wellbeing Board meetings and seminars

Future Meetings

Formal meetings of the Board are scheduled for Thursday 24 June and Thursday 7 October 2021.


The Health and Wellbeing Board held a private seminar on 19 November 2020 focused on ‘neighbourhoods and communities at the heart of health and wellbeing.’ This continued the theme of previous seminars, aiming to encourage a collection of conversations regarding social prescribing, and reviewing the evidence of what is happening now within our communities. Seminar attendees were asked to consider how they could use this knowledge to further develop networks and partnerships to improve health outcomes and reduce inequalities across the communities of West Sussex, particularly as we continue through the COVID-19 pandemic.  

Placeholders for future seminars have been sent to Health and Wellbeing Board members for 30 July 2021 and 11 March 2022. Both seminars are scheduled for 10.30am – 12.30pm.

Please contact Democratic Services for further information. 

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