Wigan Borough public health lead hits top 100

photo of Prof Kate Adern

The director for public health at Wigan Council is the first director of public health in the country to make it on to the HSJ100 list.

Professor Kate Ardern has made the prestigious list which normally only lists figures from the NHS and health policy worlds.

Coming in at 100 as one of a handful of new entries on the list it recognises the work that has been done by Professor Ardern and Wigan Council to put public health on the national radar.

It comes at the end of a year where the work being done across the council has been praised as the future for the NHS. Professor Chris Ham, former chief executive of the King’s Fund, has used the approach of Wigan Council and its health partners as inspiration to call for a “new deal” for the NHS.

This new deal would emphasise people’s responsibility to use services appropriately and keep healthy as well as law and policy-makers working more closely with communities.

Last month the chief scientific advisor to the Department of Health and Social Care also praised the way that Wigan Council is delivering public health.

Professor Chris Whitty, who also heads up the National Institute for Health Research, saw how public health is playing an integral role in the lives of Wigan Borough residents and by trying innovative approaches to supporting those in need are making a huge impact.

Professor Ardern said: “It is a great honour to be included alongside the very best of health care across the country. This success is recognition of the work of the entire team across public health in Wigan Borough and our partners in health too as without that collaborative working it would not be possible for us to put the work that we do on the map and receive the positive recognition it does.”

Topping the HSJ100 2018 was Simon Stevens, the chief executive of NHS England, while the only other public health figures to make the list was Duncan Selbie, the chief executive of Public Health England and Local Government Association’s chief executive Mark Lloyd.

The HSJ100 was launched in 2005 and is judged by a panel of experienced and knowledgeable figures in health care.