March 23 marks the one-year anniversary since the first national lockdown and is also the launch date for the Warwickshire County Council Director of Public Health’s annual report.
This year the report focuses on Warwickshire residents and their experiences of living through the COVID-19 pandemic, helping to understand how it has impacted on their health along with other challenges they have faced and where they have found support.
The current pandemic has affected everybody’s health and wellbeing. It has shone a light on the health inequalities which already existed in Warwickshire - for example, life expectancy is 8.2 years lower for men and 5.7 years lower for women in the most deprived areas of Warwickshire than in the least deprived areas.
This year’s report uses a case study approach to share residents' experiences of testing positive with COVID-19 and living through lockdown. The report is a vital tool to raise awareness of the impact of the pandemic in our communities, highlighting what we must put in place to support everyone to recover from the pandemic, improve health and wellbeing and reduce health inequalities.
To accompany the report, COVID-19 Stories is an online gallery that shares additional stories from Warwickshire residents about their experiences through the pandemic. Photographs from across the county have been captured to illustrate the case studies. To view the gallery visit www.warwickshire.gov.uk/covid19stories
Commenting on the release of the report, Warwickshire Director of Public Health, Dr Shade Agboola said:
“I am delighted to share my first annual report, it is a valuable tool to raise awareness on the health inequalities in Warwickshire and highlight how COVID-19 has impacted upon them. I have a statutory duty to produce this report and the recommendations I have made work to improve the health and wellbeing of Warwickshire’s residents and reduce the health inequalities which exist.”
Warwickshire County Council Chief Executive, Monica Fogarty added:
“I want to express my thanks to Dr Agboola and the Public Health team who have been vital in leading and delivering the council’s response to COVID-19 in Warwickshire. The team has worked at pace with colleagues across the public, private and voluntary and community sectors as well as local and national government to reduce the transmission of COVID-19. This commitment to partnership working has meant the response has been a truly collaborative effort. Public Health will continue to be at the forefront of everything we do as we move out of lockdown and begin our return to the lives we have missed.”
An online dashboard called ‘Monitoring Health Inequalities’ is published alongside the report and considers health data over time at various geographies. The data relates to a range of themes covered in the report, including the wider determinants of health and inequalities and will continue to be added to as more data is made available. To view the dashboard visit www.warwickshire.gov.uk/publichealthannualreport
Read the full report at: warwickshire.gov.uk/publichealthannualreport