The University of Northampton today launched the new Institute of Health and Wellbeing with an event held at Park campus. Hosted by Vice-Chancellor Professor Nick Petford and the Director of the Institute Professor Carol Philllips, the launch featured a keynote speech from Professor Chris Drinkwater, President and Public Health Lead of NHS Alliance.
Professor Phillips highlighted the vision for the Institute of Health and Wellbeing, an interdisciplinary centre of excellence within the University. With the strap line ‘Building better lives through collaboration’, the Institute will be working in partnership with the health and social care community to support research and innovation relevant to the health and wellbeing of the population of Northamptonshire.
An example of interdisciplinary research to be developed is the relationship between housing and health, aiming to influence the housing agenda for the next 20 years within Northamptonshire. An important theme will be ‘Family Health and Wellbeing’ including projects focusing on the first 1,001 days of a child’s life – how nutrition and educational stimulation of both mother and child can have an impact on early years’ health and wellbeing.
The event also featured talks from Professor John Parkes of Greater East Midlands Commissioning Support Unit, Dr Akeem Ali of Northamptonshire County Council, Dr David Smart GP and Professor Jonathan Campion, Director for Public Mental Health. The speakers addressed the audience regarding building better lives through collaboration.
Professor Nick Petford commented: “With a presence on the Health and Wellbeing Board for Northampton, the University will have a very strong voice in shaping the future strategy and agenda of health and wellbeing for the people of Northamptonshire and beyond, as the Institute will reflect what is happening nationally.
“This is an exciting project and provides a superb opportunity to develop a really integrated healthcare agenda that reaches out across large parts of the University.”