Public health project duo recognised with prestigious award

The pioneers behind three projects to cut smoking, reduce childhood obesity and prevent unnecessary admissions to hospital in Sheffield have been named as runners-up in a national awards scheme.

Max Moullin, a visiting fellow and former principal lecturer at Sheffield Business School, and John Soady from Sheffield City Council joined forces to work on the programmes in a bid to improve health in the city.

The projects, Sheffield Stop Smoking Service; Sheffield Let’s Change4Life (SLC4L) a £10 million programme addressing obesity in children and families in the city; and Sheffield Right First Time – a programme aimed at cutting unnecessary admissions to hospital – all saw positive results.

The numbers of smokers who gave up more than doubled from 1,500  to 3,000; the numbers of reception-age children of a healthy weight rose above the national average and there was a reduction in the number of emergency hospital admissions.

The projects used the Public Sector Scorecard, devised by Max over 15 years ago.  It involves interactive workshops with senior managers, staff and service-users to develop strategy, improve outcomes and monitor performance.

The Public Sector Scorecard is designed to work across organisational boundaries and address some of the major problems facing society.

It focuses on desired outcomes, processes and the organisational and behavioural factors needed to support staff and processes in order to achieve success.

John, public health principal at Sheffield Council and Max, who is director of the Public Sector Scorecard Research Centre, were presented with the Operational Research Society President’s Medal runner-up award in London

Max said: “Using our academic expertise to help tackle some of the world’s most serious health issues is a priority for us at Sheffield Hallam University and I am delighted to receive this award, together with John, for the work we undertook to  improve the health of

Sheffield’s citizens.

“These projects saw collaboration between academics, managers, staff and service-users to tackle complex health issues on our own doorstep and improve the health of people in Sheffield and in particular in those communities facing the most severe health inequalities.”

Other academics from Sheffield Hallam University involved in these projects included Professor Rob Copeland from the Centre for Sport and Excellence Science and Dr Christine Gilligan and Rachel Rundle from Sheffield Business School.

For more information on the Public Sector Scorecard, see www.publicsectorscorecard.co.uk

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