Department of Health and Social Care: Disclosure of Information

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 5th July 2018.

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Photo of Andrew Gwynne Andrew Gwynne Co-National Campaign Coordinator, Shadow Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether his Department facilitates information-sharing with his counterparts in developing countries.

Photo of Andrew Gwynne Andrew Gwynne Co-National Campaign Coordinator, Shadow Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what the role and remit is of Global Health Team within his Department.

Photo of Steve Brine Steve Brine The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care

The Department of Health and Social Care has two key teams dealing with global health.

The International team leads on the United Kingdom’s relationship with the World Health Organization and health aspects of other international bodies and fora, including certain other United Nation organisations, G7, G20 and the Commonwealth, working closely with the Department for International Development and other partners across Government. It also leads on the Department of Health and Social Care’s bilateral relationships with other countries; on co-ordinating strategy across Government; and on the health implications of trade. This collaboration entails information-sharing with a number of countries including lower and middle income countries (LMICs), including during international meetings, through the facilitation of visits by overseas delegations, and by working with officials at the Department for International Development on their programmes.

The Global Health Security team, through the Department’s Official Development Assistance (ODA) allocation, works closely with a number of LMICs to share best practice and build capacity including through the Fleming Fund to strengthen surveillance of antimicrobial resistance (AMR), the International Health Regulations strengthening project and the UK Public Health Rapid Support team. The team also works to support the Chief Medical Officer in strengthening international collaboration to tackle AMR.

In addition, the Global Health Research team uses ODA funding to commission and deliver research of direct and primary benefit to people in LMICs, through the National Institute of Health Research, to improve global health outcomes.

Public Health England (PHE) delivers ongoing programmes of work in developing countries to provide training and facilitate health systems strengthening. Information sharing is part of this work. PHE also works with specific countries to improve their capability for compliance with the International Health Regulations, and has formal memoranda of understanding with India and Nigeria to facilitate the exchange of information and expertise.

The PHE United Kingdom Public Health Rapid Support Team responds to urgent requests from official development assistance eligible countries to support them to control disease outbreaks.

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