Trailblazing Hub welcomes public health body

A trailblazing project to bring a school, leisure, health, community and public services onto one site is welcoming a new partner.

Construction of the Mildenhall Hub is well underway and is due to be completed later this year. As well as Mildenhall College Academy, the building will also house a leisure centre, health centre, children’s centre, Suffolk Library and advice centre, as well as office space for a range of partners including Suffolk Police, Suffolk County Council, West Suffolk Council and the NHS.

Now Public Health England has signed up to take some of this office space in the Hub for its health protection team. In the short-term it is initially moving to the council’s existing offices in Mildenhall and will then move to the Hub when building works are completed.

Public Health England protect the nation from public health hazards, prepare and respond to public health emergencies and promote healthier lifestyles. They will be providing specialist public health advice and operational support to NHS, local authorities and other public sector agencies covering the east of England.  While their role is all about keeping people healthy and protecting the health of the public, they will not be directly involved in treating patients at the hub.

Marcia Faint, Centre Operations Manager, Public Health England, East of England said: “We are pleased to be a new partner joining the Mildenhall Hub, working alongside many of our public-sector partners who we already work with on a daily basis. It is exciting to be a part of a project that will encourage a more collaborative way of working between partners improving the way we protect the health and wellbeing of residents across the region.”

Chair of West Suffolk Council, Brian Harvey, said: “The Mildenhall Hub is unique, a blueprint for others to follow and I’m thrilled that Public Health England have been able to join this innovative project and locate their regional office here as part of the Government’s One Public Estate Programme.”

Joanna Rayner, West Suffolk Council Cabinet Member for Leisure, Culture and Community Hubs, said: “The Mildenhall Hub is exciting because it means improved facilities that are better suited to the needs of people in Mildenhall and the surrounding villages. We already share our offices in College Heath Road with a number of partners and we already see people using the services of the council and various partners during a single visit. The Hub will take this to a ground-breaking new level – for instance people will be able to visit the health centre, join the gym, borrow library books and speak to local authorities about any issues, all in one visit.

“The Hub isn’t just a building, it’s a culture change – a new, more innovative and integrated way of working across various organisations which will benefit the people using these services making them more resilient and able to cope with any future developments and challenges it may face. I’m delighted that Public Health England have chosen to be part of this fantastic, ambitious and trailblazing project. “

Pictured above is Brian Harvey, chair of West Suffolk Council, welcoming Dr Jorg Hoffmann, deputy director of healthcare for Public Health England, and  Peter Gidman, Deputy Director Head of Estates and Facilities for Public Health England.

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