Managing our responsibilities for provision of health services will change under the new South Australian Public Health Act 2011.
I was the only City of Unley councillor who attended a briefing on this during the last week.
Not much if anything has changed in the actual function of providing the service, although the Act does make us the responsible “authority” for health in our region. It has not been designed to increase our involvement but to better co-ordinate current activity.
What is going to happen that will require our finding additional resources is we will be required to develop a “local public health” plan and a stronger emphasis on health promotion and prevention of lifestyle deseases. This plan must be integrated into our strategic plan rather than be a stand-alone document. Fortunately for us we are undertaking to develop a new strategic plan.
The plan must take into account and have regard for the State Plan that is to be developed by the Minister and which will set the priorities. Each geographical area obviously has its own unique public health issues and these will be reflected in the individual plans.
The Act does allow for us to stand alone or develop a plan regionally, in a cluster if you will.