Via The Guardian: Staff disillusionment at new public health body, survey shows. Excerpt:
While last year's biggest-ever NHS shakeup involved a bonfire of about 170 quangos, it also led to the creation of 240 new bodies, such as NHS England, the supposed top dogs of a system in theory "liberated" from Whitehall control. A reorganisation that saw public health return from the NHS to local government also gave us Public Health England (PHE).
"Our mission is to protect and improve the nation's health and to address inequalities," it says. Its priorities include "helping people to live longer and more healthy lives by reducing preventable deaths and the burden of ill-health associated with smoking, high blood pressure, obesity, poor diet, poor mental health, insufficient exercise, and alcohol". Its success is vital, not least if the NHS is to remain sustainable in the face of ageing, the rise in long-term conditions, demand for expensive new drugs and other pressures.
But the PHE's own staff survey, released last week, shows it is not a happy organisation. Just 27% feel a strong personal attachment to PHE, only 32% say it inspires them to do the best in their job and only 36% would recommend it as a great place to work.
Possibly even more worrying is that only 34% "believe that [its] national executive has a clear vision for the future of PHE", just 31% have confidence in the decisions made by senior managers and 30% feel the organisation is managed well.
Many of the results – based on questionnaires returned by 3,073 people, 61% of the 5,000-strong workforce – suggest a widespread disillusionment.
With 64% of adults in England overweight or obese, and tobacco and alcohol causing huge amounts of disease, disability and death, public health needs PHE to be effective. Even those involved in the controversial and credibility-light Responsibility Deal process – a historic abrogation of government's duty to tell vested interests what they should be doing for our benefit – do not pretend the voluntary agreements it reaches with food and drink manufacturers and sellers, such as on food labelling, are the solution to problems that bring misery and cost the NHS billions.