Consultation launched into lifestyle services
Published on Thursday, April 19, 2018
A CONSULTATION has been launched by the city council into the lifestyle services it provides.
Lifestyle services focus on helping people to make healthier choices. They include the council’s services to help people stop smoking, increase their physical activity and maintain a healthy diet.
Currently, the services are run separately, but a new proposal would see them integrated together to offer a more ‘joined-up’ approach to healthy lifestyles. This would mean Leicester residents could get help from a variety of different services after just one referral.
Under the plans, Leicester residents will be able to refer themselves, or get a referral from their GP. People would be able to get help and support digitally – for example from apps, websites and online chat forums – or by phone or text message, as well as face-to-face support.
People who have already made changes to their lifestyle would also be encouraged to act as ‘activators’ in the community, helping to support others who want to make changes too.
It’s estimated that if these plans were adopted, they could save around £1million. The current level of funding for the services is £1.76million.
Deputy city mayor Cllr Adam Clarke, who leads on public health, said: “We’re asking for people’s views on these changes. We want to make sure they are working in the most effective way for people.
“For example, if someone wants to give up smoking and get more active, they shouldn’t have to be referred to two separate schemes. Under these proposals, there would be just one easy point of referral.
“People should be able to make use of digital, online and phone support if they want to and we would like to invest further in this. We also want to make sure we’re making the best use of resources like our outdoor gyms.
“Government cuts to the public health budget mean we have to look at reorganising services to keep them cost-effective. But we’re determined to keep providing the best possible services – because we know they are much in demand.”
Poor lifestyle choices such as smoking, eating unhealthily and not being active enough can lead to cardiovascular disease, cancer, respiratory diseases and other ill health.
Cardiovascular diseases, cancers and respiratory diseases account for two out of every three deaths in Leicester.
The consultation runs from 19 April until 10 June. To take part, visit https://consultations.leicester.gov.uk/