A Draft National Preventative Health Strategy (the Strategy) was released recently for comment via a website survey which closes on 19 April.
The survey and the Strategy are available here.
The Strategy aims to help Australians improve their health at all stages of life, through early intervention, better information, targeting risk factors and addressing the broader causes of poor health and wellbeing.
The Strategy recognises that health is not just the presence or absence of disease or injury – more holistically, it is a state of wellbeing. The approach to the Strategy is not disease specific but rather, it focuses on system wide, evidence-based approaches to reducing poor health.
The Strategy reflects the results of prior consultation via workshops, an online national consumer survey, and submissions on a Consultation Paper.
CFA’s submission on the Consultation Paper recommended that mental health be a focus area for action and is pleased that protecting mental health is one of the Strategy’s focus areas which are:
- Reducing tobacco use
- Improving access to and the consumption of a healthy diet
- Increasing physical activity
- Increasing cancer screening and prevention
- Improving immunisation coverage
- Reducing alcohol and other drug harm
- Protecting mental health
The Strategy includes the following seven interconnected enablers for the mobilisation of a prevention system:
- Leadership, governance and funding
- Prevention in the health system
- Partnerships and community engagement
- Information and health literacy
- Research and evaluation
- Monitoring and surveillance
It is anticipated that the final Strategy will be launched in mid-2021.
Ian Jarratt, CFA’s representative on the Food Standards Australia and New Zealand’s Consumer and Public Health Dialogue.