About Health Information Week #HIW2016

Follow the week's events and join in the conversation via Twitter: #HIW2017

Health Information Week is a multi-sector campaign to promote the good quality health resources that are available to the public. This aims to encourage partnership working across sectors and benefit all staff and the public by raising awareness of the resources that are available to them.

In 2005, Health Information Week was held for the first time and the success of the campaign has made it an annual event in the calendar of the information staff in the West Midlands and there are now many events throughout the UK. The previous campaigns were followed by wide consultation with those who took part and feedback was gathered. A report is available from many previous Health Information Weeks.

Having a multi-sectored campaign to promote quality health information will fulfil some of the national priorities, for example:

•Patients and the public use the right knowledge and evidence, at the right time, in the right place (Knowledge for Healthcare, Health Education England) 
•Encourage partnership working and improve access to quality local information (Better Information, Better Choices, Better Health, DOH)
•Local communities leading for health (Choosing Health, DOH)
•Promote healthier communities (Public Libraries Impact Measures)
•Providing evidence based services, advice and information on health and wellbeing interventions (Professional Standards for Public Health Practice for Pharmacy)
•Information, combined with the right support, is the key to better care, better outcomes and reduced costs (Equity and Excellence: Liberating the NHS)
•Good information and communication promote health literacy, treatment adherence, self-management, shared decision-making, confidence and realistic expectations. (Information: A report from the NHS Future Forum)

It is hoped that working together with other partners will improve the overall access to quality health resources which will benefit the public as well as staff members of the different organisations.

All of the information and documentation will be disseminated as widely as possible for these staff groups and organisations:

•Health librarians
•Public Librarians
•Health Promotion & Public Health
•Specialist Resource Centres
•Council staff
Staff will be asked to collaborate with the other staff groups in their local area and to be creative in their ideas, eg: putting up displays where they would not normally promote their resources, holding health fairs, holding competitions and raffles to encourage participation etc.  
Some information providers may prefer to concentrate on a specific topic or issue, rather than the wide subject of health information. If this is the case, it would be advisable to cover some or all of the Government’s priority public health issues:

•Reduce the number of people who smoke
•Reduce obesity / increase exercise
•Support sensible drinking
•Improve sexual health
•Improve mental health and wellbeing
•Tackle health inequalities
Staff are encouraged to share their promotion materials so that a wider audience is reached.  Assistance will be provided in the form of suggestions for promotional materials, recommended health websites, advice on holding a health fair, local contacts lists, facilitation for groups of information providers to gather to collaborate on events or displays if required.
The reports on previous campaigns are available and this will give participants ideas and suggestions on how to participate this year.

All activity planned for this week will be tracked by Sarah Greening at HEE (participants are asked to inform Sarah about their initiatives) and events will be promoted on this website

Sarah Greening
Health Information Co-ordinator,
NHS Health Education England West Midlands,
St. Chad's Court,
213 Hagley Road,
B16 9RG
Telephone: 0121 695 2227
Email: sarah.greening@wm.hee.nhs.uk