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Deanery of Molecular, Genetic and Population Health Sciences | Usher Institute

Centre for Population Health Sciences

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CPHS Centenary of Public Health Lecture Series: Event 4 2015

The health of the city of Edinburgh: 1865, 2015, and 2165

A celebratory symposium marking the 150th anniversary of the Report on the Sanitary Condition of the City of Edinburgh in 1865 by the first Medical Officer of Health, Sir Henry Littlejohn

Hosted by

Usher Institute of Population Health Sciences and Informatics & History of Medicine Group (RCP, RCS, University of Edinburgh).

Date: 21st October 2015

Time: 16:00 – 18:15

Location: Playfair Hall, Royal College of Surgeons, Nicholson Street, Edinburgh, EH8 9DW.

Time Programme
16:00 – 16:30 Refreshments
16:30 – 16:40 Chair’s introduction and welcome: Raj Bhopal
16:40 – 17:10 Legacy of Sir Henry Littlejohn: from insanitary city to beacon of health? Richard Rodger and Paul Laxton
17:10 – 17:40 Report on the sanitary condition of the City of Edinburgh 2015. Alison McCallum
17:40 – 17:55 Public health hopes: what might Edinburgh be like in 150 years? Will we capitalise on our legacy? Vittal Katikireddi on behalf of those training in public health
17:55 – 18:15 Questions, comments and discussion, and closing remarks.

What is the background?

How did the City of Edinburgh progress from its Auld Reekie (meaning dirty and smelly) status to being a beacon of medical sciences, with its citizens being amongst the healthiest in Scotland? What are the lessons from this experience that we can export to other cities and utilise to make Edinburgh an even healthier place?

This symposium is a celebration of public health that marks the 150th anniversary of the landmark first report of the first medical officer of health of Edinburgh – Sir Henry Littlejohn. The ‘Report on the Sanitary Condition of the City of Edinburgh’ was published in 1865, 33 years before the creation of The University of Edinburgh Chair of Public Health (1898). Four years after that the Usher Institute of Public Health opened its doors (1902).

This symposium is part-sponsored by the Centenary of Public Health Fund, which was set up in 2002 as part of the Centenary celebrations of the Usher Institute. The name Usher Institute was out of use from 1988-2015 but The University of Edinburgh has resurrected it this year in the form of the Usher Institute of Population Health Sciences and Informatics. This is an apt year to reflect on the past and future of public health.

Who will speak?

The Chairperson is Raj Bhopal, Bruce and John Usher Professor of Public Health at The University of Edinburgh.

The speakers are:

Richard Rodger and Paul Laxton who co-wrote ‘Insanitary City, Henry Littlejohn and the Condition of Edinburgh’ (Carnegie Publishing, Lancaster, 2013). Richard is Professor of Economic and Social History in the University of Edinburgh, and Paul is Honorary Fellow.

Alison McCallum is Director of Public Health and in that role has a statutory duty to report on the health of Edinburgh. She is in direct succession to Littlejohn. She is honorary professor at the University of Edinburgh.

Vittal Katikireddi is a registrar in public health and reflects future leadership in public health. He will speak on behalf of those training in public health on what the future might hold.

Who is it for?

This symposium is for a general audience and will be of interest to the public as well as health professionals, historians and social scientists. (All technical terms will be explained by the speakers.)

Please register for this event, so we have numbers for catering purposes, by following the link below:

REGISTER with Eventbrite

Last modified: Thursday, 31-Mar-2016 09:51:56 BST

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