West Midlands Fire Service (WMFS) has been recognised by the Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH) for its ongoing commitment to promoting health and wellbeing.
The RSPH’s Health and Wellbeing Awards 2015, now in their eighth year, showcase wide-ranging achievements that empower communities and individuals, improve the population’s health and address the wider social determinants of health.
WMFS is the only emergency service to be given one of the awards, alongside a number of councils, health organisations, education providers, social enterprises, voluntary/charity organisations and private sector organisations.
The service’s ‘two year award’ is for its ‘Improving lives to Save Lives’ programme, which the RSPH says demonstrates an embedded health improvement strategy that is measurable, effective and efficient, enabling people and communities in the West Midlands to improve their health.
It follows the news in September that WMFS was one of only three fire and rescue services to be awarded Marmot Partnership Status by Professor Sir Michael Marmot for its work in tackling health inequalities.
Gary Taylor, Assistant Chief Fire Officer with WMFS, said, “This award is testament to the care and dedication of our frontline firefighters, especially those staff who are trained as Vulnerable Persons Officers (VPOs). They engage with people who are particularly vulnerable to fire because of their complex lives and living conditions.
“The trust our communities place in us allows our frontline firefighters to go into more than 27,000 homes each year across the West Midlands, having a positive impact on a wide range of health issues. As we implement our new ‘Safe and Well’ visits, we aim to become an even more valuable asset as part of the wider public health workforce.”
The RSPH is an independent health education charity, dedicated to protecting and promoting the public’s health and wellbeing.