I am writing in response to a letter by D. Walker, Barrowford, printed in the Burnley Express on September 26th.
As he pointed out, budgets for public health, and other services offered by Lancashire County Council, have reduced significantly over the last few years. Lancashire County Council took over responsibility for public health in April 2013 and assessing people’s needs is one of our core duties to improve and protect the health of Lancashire residents. We need to make sure we provide good services, particularly for people who need them most, such as those with disabilities or long-term health conditions, while at the same time having to make unprecedented budget reductions.
A lot of careful planning is needed to ensure we get it right and we can’t just use guesswork when investing such large amounts of tax payers’ money.
That’s why we need to find out about how people live and the factors that could have an impact on their health.
The Lancashire Lifestyle Survey has been carefully designed by research experts.
Questions are similar to those used in successful surveys by other councils and NHS organisations across the country and the information people give will remain confidential.
If people don’t want to take part in the survey or disagree with the questions, they don’t have to complete it.
However, if people do take the time to complete the form, they will be helping us provide better services for them and their families for years to come.
The survey was sent to 57,000 households in Lancashire and, so far, more than 10,000 people have completed it. For people who received the survey and would like to take part there is still time to return their forms.
Dr Sakthi Karunanithi
Lancashire County Council’s Director of Public Health