Despite substantial progress in public health, this progress has not been shared equally, such that health inequalities persist.

Many are related to inequalities in the social and economic determinants of health such as income, employment, housing and the environment. At the same time, health and other public services face acute financial pressures.

These pressures have led to an emphasis on prevention to help square the circle of rising demands and constrained resources. However, tough choices need to be made about how much we invest in prevention and what forms of prevention we invest in.

This seminar summarised recent evidence on the economics of prevention that can be used to help to make these choices and discussed the challenges of developing effective strategies and tools to support prevention, preventative spend and reducing inequalities.

The speakers were:

  • Neil Craig, Principal Public Health Advisor, NHS Health Scotland, who gave a presentation on ‘The evidence base for the economics of prevention and its implications for strategies to improve health and reduce health inequalities’
  • Ken Gibb, lead on quantitative data analysis and cost effectiveness at What Works Scotland and associate with Policy Scotland. He presented on ‘Exploring new tools and different models to overcome the challenge of increasing the role of prevention in public services’.

Ken Gibb – Lessons and challenges: prevention and public service reform (PDF)

Neil Craig – The Economics of Prevention (PDF)

The presentations were followed by facilitated table discussions to share learning, thinking and current developments.

This event was for people from the public and third/community sectors who work within or alongside community planning partnerships and health and social care partnerships on strategy, policy, service management and development and/or local partnership development.

Date: 16 May 2016

Location: Aberdeen