England's Chief Medical Officer Professor Chris Whitty heard about a range of public health interventions that are helping to improve the health and wellbeing of residents in Wolverhampton on a visit to the city earlier this month.

Professor Whitty met with Wolverhampton's Director of Public Health John Denley and leaders from the local health and care system and saw first hand some of the initiatives which are underway in the city.

He heard more about Better Health: Rewards, a 6 month Government backed pilot programme which is running in Wolverhampton to support residents to eat better and move more, and the One Wolverhampton place based partnership, a collaboration of health, social care, voluntary and community organisations.

Professor Whitty visited the Mander Centre Health Hub, a new initiative between health, social care and community and voluntary organisations which provides a range of easy to access services to local people, including NHS Health Checks, vaccinations and sexual health clinics.

Meanwhile, at Central Library he saw how libraries and other community venues are being used to offer low level, non clinical interventions such as blood pressure checks, mini health checks and baby weighing services. Health monitors are being installed in 5 city libraries and the council's 3 WV Active leisure centres, helping to reduce demand on GPs. In addition, over 200 home blood pressure monitors are being made available to residents to borrow from city libraries.

The Chief Medical Officer then visited Molineux Stadium to find out more about Head 4 Health, a Wolves Foundation initiative which is supporting adults to improve their mental and physical health and wellbeing. 

He also met with a group of Young Health Champions from Uplands Junior School, who have delivered a range of campaigns to their peers on subjects like healthy eating and moving more, with very positive outcomes.

The visit concluded with a round table discussion with Mark Axcell, Chief Executive Officer of the Black Country Integrated Care Board, Professor David Loughton CBE, Chief Executive of The Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust, Paul Tulley, Managing Director of the Black Country Integrated Care Board, Tim Johnson, the Chief Executive of the City of Wolverhampton Council and Councillor Jasbir Jaspal, the council’s Cabinet Member for Adults and Wellbeing. 

Professor Whitty said: "I was delighted to meet with health and care colleagues in Wolverhampton to see first hand the excellent and innovative work that is taking place across the city to improve the population’s health.”

Mr Denley added: "It was a great opportunity to welcome the Chief Medical Officer to Wolverhampton and to share with him a range of initiatives which are underway to improve the health and wellbeing of our residents.

"I hope Professor Whitty saw that we are a forward thinking, ambitious city, keen to work in partnership to improve the health of our residents.

"I would like to thank everyone who was part of the visit and helped to showcase our services, and I'd particularly like to thank our Young Health Champions from Uplands Junior School who really challenged Professor Whitty with their questions – and even got him to practice his drawing skills to show the different things that can affect a person's health.”

Councillor Jasbir Jaspal, Cabinet Member for Adults and Wellbeing, said: “It was a pleasure to meet Professor Whitty, and we look forward to keeping him updated on our various initiatives, and particularly the outcomes of the Better Health: Rewards pilot.”