Health inequalities: Place and Wellbeing Programme Steering Group minutes - November 2021

Minutes from the meeting of the group on 17 November 2021.

Attendees and apologies

  • Michael Kellet (Chair), Director for Population Health, Scottish Government
  • David Allan (Deputising), Deputy Director, Scottish Community Development Centre
  • Marion Bain, Public Health Advisor, Scottish Government
  • Linda Bauld, Chief Social Policy Advisor, Scottish Government
  • Lorna Birse-Stewart, Chair, NHS Tayside
  • Sam Cassels, Place Principle Advisor, Regeneration Unit, Scottish Government
  • Angela Davidson, Deputy Director for Improving Mental Health and Wellbeing, Scottish Government
  • Nicola Dickie, Director of People Policy, Convention of Scottish Local Authorities
  • Ruth Glassborow, Director of Improvement, Health Improvement Scotland
  • Vicky Irons, Chief Officer, Dundee Health and Social Care Partnership
  • Karen MacNee, Deputy Director for Health Improvement, Scottish Government
  • Gerard McCormack, Head of Transformation, Performance and Improvement, Improvement Service
  • Dona Milne, Vice Chair of the SDPH Group, NHS Lothian
  • Jane O’Donnell, Deputy Director for Local Government and Analytical Services, Scottish Government
  • Carol Potter, Chief Executive, NHS Fife
  • Karen Reid, Chief Executive, NHS Education for Scotland
  • Peter Seaman, Associate Director, Glasgow Centre for Population Health
  • Kimberley Somerside (Deputising), Policy Engagement Officer, Voluntary Health Scotland
  • Claire Sweeney, Director of Place and Wellbeing, Public Health Scotland
  • Joy Tomlinson, NHS Fife, Director of Public Health
  • Alison White, Convenor, Social Work Scotland


  • Naureen Ahmad, Deputy Director for General Practice Policy, Scottish Government
  • Fiona Garven, Director, Scottish Community Development Centre
  • Angela Leitch, Chief Executive, Public Health Scotland
  • Lynn MacMillan, Head of Health Inequalities Unit, Scottish Government
  • Claire Stevens, Chief Executive, Voluntary Health Scotland

Items and actions


The Chair welcomed attendees and outlined the objectives of the meeting.

The aim of the meeting was to provide the Steering Group with an introduction to the Place and Wellbeing Programme. It was an opportunity for members to give initial feedback.

An overview of the Care and Wellbeing Portfolio was also given.

Introduction to the Place and Wellbeing Programme

Karen MacNee, Deputy Director for Health Improvement with Scottish Government, gave an overview of the Place and Wellbeing Programme. The Programme’s vision is communities, third sector and public sector working jointly to improve health and wellbeing and reduce health inequalities. The Programme will support local level action whilst aligning national policy behind this.

The need to bring the whole system together around shared goals was stressed. Key considerations within this might include: funding and governance that supports partnership working; use of data and intelligence; local leadership and public health workforce.

Open discussion

Members were invited to share comments and ask questions about the Programme. There was a general discussion which noted:

  • the importance of building on existing work and practice, notably that of Community Planning Partnerships, the Scottish Community Development Centre and the Improvement Service’s Health and Wellbeing Collaborative
  • a need to consider how organisations have adapted during the COVID-19 pandemic, and we should continue to work flexibly and creatively. The Programme should align with the COVID-19 Recovery Strategy and public sector reform
  • that the Place and Wellbeing outcomes developed by the Improvement Service’s Health and Wellbeing collaborative could be utilised
  • questions over the definition of ‘public health workforce’ with general consensus that this should include those outside the health workforce in order to influence root causes of health inequalities, for example poverty and education. Previous work done to map the wider public health workforce was flagged
  • the intelligence that the Scottish Community Development Centre have gathered through supporting their networks was offered as a resource. It was also noted that there is a need to identify the full input of the third sector, both locally and nationally
  • the need to move at pace. It was suggested that this agenda could be included as a reporting measure for NHS boards moving forward to help with this. Additionally, there was a question about whether population health could be considered as part of existing Equality Impact Assessments

Terms of reference, frequency of meetings and group membership

Members were invited to suggest any gaps in the group membership. It was agreed that representation from Social Work Scotland was needed and Alison White could fulfil that role, as a convenor for the organisation. It was also agreed that SOLACE needed representing in the group. Private sector representation was also considered.

Members were invited to share by email further thoughts on the Programme, group membership and the draft terms of Reference.

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