The Health In Your Environment forum proposed that Nottingham Health Action Group could organise the seminars to further its objectives. Their themes were linked with national initiatives, i.e. setting up of the Food Agency and the Government's papers on transport and energy efficiency.
The aim for the events was to bring together people with health, social and environmental perspectives to:
The success of each seminar was due to the planning. Each was planned by a multi-sector group so that we could take into account the priorities, concerns and good practices of each sector at an early stage. They included people with expertise in the subject and those who could influence people within their own sector. The planning groups were able to attract sponsorship for the Energy efficiency seminar from Transco and from Glaxo Wellcome for the Asthma seminar.
- identify current problems and their causes
- identify potential solutions
- motivate action to overcome the problems
- share information about good practice
Each day followed a similar format: a key speaker with a national perspective; discussion groups focusing on how we can each make improvements; displays and information sharing opportunities; plenary for sharing action ideas.
The seminars were held in October and November 1998, with the following achievements.
- Excellent chairs and speakers contributed, e.g. the Chairman of Nottingham Health Authority, the Chairman of Nottingham Joint Consultative Committee, two local MPs and two Professors.
- A student from Nottingham Trent University undertaking an MSc in Integrated Environmental Control produced informative displays for all four seminars.
- All seminars were well attended with between 70 and 90 representatives from local authorities, Nottingham Health Authority, voluntary organisations, businesses, Health Trusts and GP practices.
- Evaluation sheets were completed by most participants and were very positive. There were requests for follow-up meetings about the existing and related topics.
- Lots of good ideas for making improvements were developed and have been fed into the Health Improvement Programme, Health Action Zone and Primary Care Groups.
- The Joint Consultative Committee endorsed a report about the FEAT seminars and agreed the recommendations at its meeting in February 1999.
- Nottingham Health Action Group has determined in principle that at least one action from each seminar will be implemented using NHAG resources.
- Many of the FEAT ideas are being incorporated into the Health Improvement Programme.
A follow-up meeting was held in May 1999 to review progress and identify how action could be taken forward. Again this was well attended, and participants committed themselves to developing initiatives using resources like the Health Initiatives Budget.