Professor Chris Whitty, Chief Medical Officer for England, visited Peterborough to learn more about how Peterborough City Council and its partners are working together for better health outcomes for the city’s communities.
Known for leading the government’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic alongside Sir Patrick Vallance, Professor Whitty began the afternoon at Gladstone Community Centre before visiting Thistlemoor Medical Centre.
Professor Whitty said: “I was interested to visit Peterborough to learn about the city’s public health outcomes and opportunities, as well as some of the challenges that they face.
“I was particularly interested in the excellent work they are doing on secondary prevention. I am keen to continue working with colleagues in Peterborough on workplace health and adolescent health.”
Welcomed by Jyoti Atri, director of public health for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, as well as representatives from community groups and local employers, discussions took place on and the health opportunities and challenges for the city.
Jyoti Atri, Director of Public Health, and Professor Whitty’s host for the day, said: “We face some significant health challenges and the last few years have been particularly tough for many of our communities.
“We were able to share some of the great work we have done locally with our partners, both in response to the pandemic, but also what we are doing to improve health and wellbeing more generally.”
He heard about how Peterborough’s Health and Work Strategy had highlighted some of the problems faced by lower paid workers on insecure contracts and how this affected their health. COMPAS’s Petr Torak described the challenges that members of the Eastern European communities had experienced and their ongoing influence.
A tour of Thistlemoor Medical Centre was next on the agenda, where the professor saw first-hand how the practice works within its local communities and patients.
Dr Neil Modha described how his practice works to build trust and provide patients with care to help prevent poor health.
Councillor John Howard, Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Health, and Public Health, said: “We were delighted to welcome Professor Whitty and highlight some of the excellent partnership work and community initiatives taking place in Peterborough as well as give a good understanding of the issues that the city face and how we are tackling them.”