In November, a joint report of the Professional Standards Authority and the Royal Society for Public Health looked at how accredited registers’ practitioners can make a significant contribution to promoting and protecting the public’s health.
This report, which is based on a survey of more than 4,500 practitioners in the accredited registers workforce, reveals the extent to which practitioners on accredited registers can contribute to addressing the growing public health crises in the UK. It found both a willingness and ability to promote the public’s health through healthy lifestyle conversations and effective signposting with patients. It also outlines some of the barriers which stop the UK making the most of the accredited registers’ workforce.
The report concluded, “Practitioners on accredited registers make a large contribution to promoting the public’s health, and this report has drawn out some of the many ways they encourage and promote healthy behaviour and lifestyles in the UK. It is a key principle of the wider public health workforce that every contact between a professional and a member of the public can and should be capitalised upon in any number of ways to support their health and wellbeing. Despite this, it is clear that the large majority of AR practitioners consider themselves to be under-utilised in promoting the public’s health.”
“Meeting the challenges outlined in this report will require the best practice in brief interventions, such as healthy conversations and accurate signposting advice, to be embedded more systematically in the AR workforce. Combined with the significant appetite among accredited registers to play a larger role in supporting the public’s health, the impact of these interventions can be extended as much as possible. With 80,000 practitioners now on accredited registers, many of whom naturally engage their clients in lifestyle discussions as part of their work already, this workforce should be recognised as an untapped resource that has both the opportunity and ability to positively impact the public’s health.”
The Government is supportive of the idea of accredited registers. Surely it’s time to make best use of them?