CHARTER FOR PUBLIC HEALTH published by the Public Health Alliance in 1992:

The following are the essential basis of every citizen’s right to good health


which provides the material means to remain healthy


that are safe, warm, dry, secure and affordable


that is safe, nourishing, widely available and affordable


that permits accessible, safe travel at reasonable cost and encourages fuel economy and a clean environment


that is properly rewarded, in or out of the home, which is worthwhile and free from hazards to health and safety


which are protected from dangerous pollution and radiation, and planned to preserve and enhance our quality of life


which provide care for those who need it, and support for carers; clean, safe water and waste disposal; adequate childcare and recreation facilities


which give all the necessary information to keep us healthy, and the confidence and resources to tackle the causes of ill health


properly resourced, free at the point of use and sensitive to our health needs


to good health regardless of class, race, gender, physical ability, age or sexual orientation


which gives freedom from war, and from the threats of crime and violence


which recognises the importance of self fulfilment and supportive social relationships, and promotes these through the provision of domiciliary support and other services.


The UK Public Health Association Core Principles:

  • Combating health inequalities – working for a fairer, more equitable and healthier society
  • Promoting Sustainable Development – ensuring healthy environments for future generations
  • Challenging anti-health forces – promoting health-sustaining production, consumption and employment. Collaborating with businesses to promote socially responsible and healthy products and services

What is Public Health?

“The science and art of preventing disease, prolonging life and promoting health through the organised efforts of society.” (Sir Donald Acheson 1988)

Different organisations have different definitions of public health. At the UKPHA we believe that public health:

  • is an approach that focuses on the health and well being of a society and the most effective means of protecting and improving it
  • encompasses the science, art and politics of preventing illness and disease and promoting health and well being
  • addresses the root causes of illness and disease, including the interacting social, environmental, biological and psychological dimensions, as well as the provision of effective health services
  • addresses inequalities, injustices and denials of human rights, which frequently explain large variations in health locally, nationally and globally.
  • works effectively through partnerships that cut across professional and organisational boundaries, and seeks to eliminate avoidable distinctions.
  • relies upon evidence, judgement and skills and promotes the participation of the populations who are themselves the subject of policy and action.
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