Health Protection is a term used to encompass a set of activities within the Public Health function. It involves:
- Ensuring the safety and quality of food, water, air and the general environment
- Preventing the transmission of communicable diseases
- Managing outbreaks and the other incidents which threaten the public health.
The profile of Health Protection has increased significantly in recent years with issues such as immunisation, food borne infections, pandemic flu, healthcare associated infection and communicable diseases regularly being in the public eye. The quality of public protection from hazards demands a workforce, educated and trained to the highest standards.
In order to move towards a cohesive, integrated and progressive approach to workforce education development in health protection NHS Education for Scotland (NES) has been working in partnership with Health Protection Scotland (HPS) and stakeholders. This work includes the development and implementation of the ' Framework for Workforce Education Development for Health Protection in Scotland' (NES and HPS, 2006) which set the context for joint working and continues to deliver in three main areas:
- Continuing the implementation of the National "Framework for Workforce Education Development for Health Protection in Scotland";
- Developing and rolling out educational packages on specific health protection topics;
- Participating in the definition and implementation of European, UK and Scottish knowledge, skills and competencies requirements.
The work is overseen by the Health Protection Education Advisory Group (HPEAG) - a multidisciplinary group bringing together the Health Protection community within Scotland to advise and support the work of HPS/NES.