Exercise referral - a collaborative approach

Session overview

Suffolk Public health have worked in collaboration with Quest and other key stakeholders to develop a bespoke Quest assessment module aimed at driving improvements in the delivery of exercise referral in Suffolk. Reflecting on the need for a tailored local approach to increasing physical activity among groups at risk of long-term health conditions, the presentation will highlight the approach taken, elements of the standard and will draw out key progress and impact of the work.

Working in partnership with Abbeycroft Leisureto create Suffolk Quality Standard for exercise referral, the Exercise Referral scheme at Abbeycrofts Bury St Edmunds facility became the first centre in Suffolk to be awarded the quality standard by Quest in November 2018.

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Sharna Allen - Health Improvement Commissioner
Suffolk County Council Public Health

Sharna currently works as a health improvement commissioner in Public Health, leading on the delivery of key initiatives and services to improve the health of the population of Suffolk. Having completed a Masters degree in international development, Sharna went on to specialise in the improvement of health, focussing on understanding population epidemiology and developing health improvement interventions across a range of public health priorities. Leading on key initiatives in the field of health inequalities, Sharna has worked in collaboration with key stakeholders across Suffolk to develop the Suffolk Exercise Referral Quality Standard. In addition to this, Sharna has been a key author to the Suffolk Physical Activity Needs Assessment, and was instrumental in developing a local pilot aimed at improving physical activity among those who experience poor mental health.

Outside of her work in Public Health, Sharna has worked on a number of initiatives in the voluntary and community sector, including overseas in Central America, so has a good working understanding of how to bring communities together to drive change and promote improvements in health and wellbeing.

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Phil Lown
Suffolk County Council Public Health

Phil has worked in the leisure industry for over 25 years. Working in a variety of roles within the sector encompassing a broad range of areas such as facility management/operation, strategic development, business development and roles within a National Governing Body.

His current role sees him working within SCC Public Health finding ways to help deliver Suffolk’s ambition to become the most active county in England; working with a range of partners from both the public and private sector to achieve better health and physical activity outcomes for the residents of Suffolk via programmes such the Suffolk Exercise Referral Quality Standard.

Warren Smyth – CEO
Abbeycroft Leisure

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Warren is the CEO of Abbeycroft Leisure, a leisure trust operating in Suffolk.  Abbeycroft has seen significant growth and now includes a very diverse portfolio of facilities that includes large multifunctional leisure centers, a low-cost health club, a corporate fitness club as well as health and wellbeing facility, The Self Centre.  In addition to this, the organisation continues to develop a broad range of physical activity initiatives and events that has included working closely with the Public Health Team at Suffolk County Council on various projects including the development of the Suffolk Exercise Referral Quality Standard. The Exercise Referral scheme at Abbeycrofts Bury St Edmunds facility became the first centre in Suffolk to be awarded the quality standard by Quest in November 2018.