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Consultation on health and wellbeing in County Durham 2023

This consultation gives you the chance to have your say on how we will improve health and wellbeing services across County Durham.

Thank you to everyone who took part in this consultation. The development of the draft strategy highlighted the need to reduce the number of priorities and make it all round a more understandable and meaningful document based on clear evidence. Please see the full feedback at the bottom of the page.


As the county's Health and Wellbeing Board, we must work with health services, public health and social care services to improve your health and wellbeing. We must also create a Joint Local Health and Wellbeing Strategy (JLHWS) to say how we will do this.

When we last consulted on the strategy in 2021, Covid-19 still had a huge impact on our health and social care services, but we are learning to live with it, and this is reflected in the new strategy for 2023-28.

The strategy

We held development sessions with our Health and Wellbeing Board members before we started to develop the new strategy. It was agreed that the new strategy should have fewer priority areas of focus, and that they should be easy for the Board, its partners and our communities to understand. Board members felt that the strategy should be streamlined, and clearer with a specific focus on the main areas that stop us from achieving our vision that County Durham is a healthy place where people live well for longer.

Priority areas of focus

The Strategy is based on information in the Joint Strategic Needs and Assets Assessment which provides the evidence base on which the priorities have been developed. The following four priority areas have the biggest impact on local outcomes and health inequalities. 

Leadership in each of the four areas will be through a formally established Partnership or Alliance, who will each work with communities in the development and implementation of their action plans using the 'Approach to Wellbeing', which help us to focus on the key role that people, families and communities play in supporting health and wellbeing.

The four priorities are:

  • making smoking history (Tobacco Control Alliance)
  • enabling healthy weight for all (Healthy Weight Alliance)
  • improving mental health, resilience and wellbeing (Mental Health Strategic Partnership)
  • reducing alcohol health harms (Drug and Alcohol Operational Group/Combating Drugs and Alcohol Strategic Partnership)

The conditions in which we are born, grow, live, work and age have a much greater impact on health outcomes. These are known as the 'wider determinants', which help to build good health, and account for approximately 45% of our health and wellbeing. As with the previous strategy, the Health and Wellbeing Board will continue to look at health throughout life, from starting well to living well to ageing well in the four priority areas. The Board will also ensure its statutory role of governance around key pieces of work is fulfilled.

The Health and Wellbeing Board will work with our other strategic partnerships to make sure they play a key role, ensuring health and wellbeing is a key factor in their plans for example, poverty, employment, education, the safety of our neighbourhoods, the quality of our homes and the environment we live in.

The Strategy is available on the Health and Wellbeing Board agenda and minutes 22 March 2023.

Have your say

Please be aware that all feedback will be considered, however this may be used to influence the development of the action plans rather than the overarching strategy.

The consultation closed at 12 noon on Thursday 13 April 2023. 

Next steps

During the consultation residents' partners and stakeholders were invited to take part, including Area Action Partnerships, Better Together Forum, Armed Forces Forum, Local Councils working group, Investing in Children, Youth Council, Patient reference Groups, Management Teams and Overview and Scrutiny Committees. There was universal support from the feedback in relation to the four priorities: relating to making smoking history; enabling healthy weight for all; improving mental health, resilience and well-being and reducing alcohol health harms. We also received valuable feedback concerning the readability of the strategy which has influenced the final document.

All feedback that was received has been reflected in the final strategy where relevant and will also contribute to the developing actions plans within it. The Strategy was agreed by Cabinet on 12 July 2023.

Read the Cabinet report in full Cabinet agenda and minutes - 12 July 2023.

The Joint Local Health and Wellbeing Strategy 2023-28 is available County Durham Partnership: Joint Health and Wellbeing Strategy.

Contact us
Contact County Durham Partnership
03000 263 593
Our address is:
  • County Hall
  • Durham
  • County Durham
  • United Kingdom
  • DH1 5UF