South Region Sustainability and Health Network

The South Region Sustainability and Health Network aims to support a rapid transformation of the health and care system in the south of England to a sustainable, resilient system. It will achieve this through the implementation of the national Sustainable Development Strategy for the NHS, Public Health and Social Care. The work of the network supports the overall strategic direction for NHS England and NHS Improvement as published in the Five Year Forward View and for Public Health England as described in their five year priorities.  

The network links and supports those working in the health and care system across the south of England. The region stretches from Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly to Kent and as far north as Gloucestershire and Oxfordshire. 

Membership of the network is free and open to all those working in or with the health and care system in the region. Members receive a regular email update, invitations to attend an annual regional conference and biannual master-classes and will have the opportunity to join supported programmes to develop local networks and leadership.

Anyone can sign up to the South Region Sustainability & Health Network newsletter here, and follow the Twitter feed @SouthRSHN. Colleagues in the South who would like to join the network should email

Governance and organisation

The SRSHN is currently coordinated by Vivienne Stevens, Sustainability & Health Project Coordinator, NHS England and NHS Improvement.



Read the network's commitment to sustainable working.

2019 events and opportunities

Watch this space for news of forthcoming SRSHN events and see below for latest information.

Preparing for the health impacts of climate change

At SRSHN's latest Sustainability Masterclass on 14th February, speakers from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and Defra talked about the adaptation actions local authorities need to start planning now, to prepare for the health impacts of climate change.

The event was not recorded but the speakers' presentation slides can be accessed via the links below:


Sari Kovats, Director of the NIHR Health Protection Research Unit in Environmental Change and Health at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.

Sari has been researching the effects of weather, climate and climate change on human health for more than 20 years and has published widely on this topic. Her particular areas of interest include health impact assessment of climate change and epidemiological studies of the effects of climate, weather and weather events in urban and rural populations.

See her slides on "The health impacts of climate change"


Owen Landeg, Principal Environmental Public Health Scientist in the Extreme Events and Health Protection Team at Public Health England and Theme Leader at the NIHR Health Protection Research Unit in Environmental Change and Health.

Owen’s focus is public health actions that protect populations from extreme weather events and improve health and wellbeing, such as promoting active transport and green infrastructure. He has extensive experience supporting frontline health protection activity and translating evidence into national policy. His interests include reducing vulnerability to extreme weather events and climate change through sustainable development and appropriate preparedness, response and recovery.

See his slides on "Evaluation of the 2018 heatwave and future developments of the Heatwave Plan for England"

Sarah Woodhall, Specialty Registrar in Public Health at South Gloucestershire Council.

Sarah has a particular interest in the health impacts of climate change and strengthening links between research, policy and practice. She completed her MSc in Public Health at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine last year and will present findings of work undertaken as part of the programme.

See her slides on "How are local authorities preparing for the health impacts of climate change? A case study of councils in South West England"

Nick Jackson, Policy Officer, Climate Change Adaptation Team, Department of Environment Food & Rural Affairs.

Nick has considerable experience in the Defra policy field, currently working in the climate change adaptation policy team, leading on the built environment, local government and health themes. Key recent achievements include his contributions to the Local Government and People and Built Environment chapters of the second National Adaptation Programme and the Government response to the Environmental Audit Committee Inquiry on Heatwaves.

See his slides on "Climate change adaptation in the health sector - including the role of the local adaptation advisory panel"

2018 events and opportunities

South Region Sustainability and Health Newsletter

The autumn edition of SRSHN’s newsletter is out now and features updates relating to the SHC awards, Ambassadors’ activities, Action on Plastic, Health & Nature, and a goodbye message from Nigel Acheson, as well as information about relevant events, opportunities and resources. You can read the autumn edition here and join the mailing list here.


Sustainability & Health Ambassadors

The SRSHN aims to have at least one Sustainability and Health Ambassador for each of the 13 South region Sustainability and Transformation Partnerships (STPs). It is hoped that these Ambassadors will help STP leaders to consider the environmental and social sustainability of new plans rather than just financial sustainability, in order to help shape localisation, devolution and community led approaches to the current transformational change agenda.

Since the Ambassadors were recruited in spring 2017, they have been provided with a programme of leadership development and have been working on local sustainability projects. On 31 July 2018 we held a special event to give the Ambassadors the opportunity to share and celebrate their achievements. You can view examples of the Ambassadors’ projects below and you can find out more about the Ambassadors in the PDF poster available here.

More projects coming soon

Report from Niall Macleod on NAPP's annual conference
In summer 2018, Sustainability & Health Ambassador Dr Niall Macleod, who is also chair of Devon Patient Group Network, gave a presentation on "PPGs influencing CCGs and STPs" at the National Association of Patient Participation's annual conference.
You can read Niall's report here and view his presentation here.


Action on Plastic

Several members of the South Region Sustainability & Health Network have formed a group to discuss ways in which we can empower NHS colleagues to take action on single use plastic.

SRSHN will be producing a toolkit to make it as easy as possible for organisations to make a difference and we will identify promising practice across the country to share with plastic champions in NHS organisations. We will also work with the Sustainable Development Unit to influence national guidance and policies to support the work of our Trusts.

In September, Nigel and James will be writing to ask NHS leaders to consider the following five questions:

1. Does our estate maximise opportunities for recycling single use plastics where they are necessary?
2. How can we reduce the single use plastics we buy?
3. How can we encourage any embedded retailers to reduce their single use plastics?
4. Is there a single use plastic champion you can support in your organisation?
5. How can your organisation communicate and engage with the local community to grow this movement from the ground up?

Follow this link to read Nigel Acheson’s blog post on single use plastic.

Contact Vivienne Stevens to join the Action on Plastic group. 

Virtual Masterclass, 17 April 2018: Sustainability involves us all – taking action now

This masterclass was presented by two of our Sustainability & Health Ambassadors, Niall MacLeod and Nicola Wong.

Please click here to view the slides presented by Nicola Wong on ‘Health Matters: Community-centred approaches for health and wellbeing’ . 
Please click here to view the slides presented by Niall MacLeod on ‘Sustainability – Bridging the gap between health, community and the natural world'. Click here to listen to Niall Macleod's presentation hosted on SoundCloud - (opens in new window - listen for 'bing' to advance slide)

2017 events

4th annual SRSHN conference – London, Thursday 19 October 2017: 

Building a Healthy Sustainable Society: an event to support STP implementation

This year’s conference focused on supporting social sustainability and ensuring this is embedded by STPs across the South region.
The programme featured an opening keynote address by Dr Michael Dixon, Chair of the College of Medicine; and an afternoon keynote address by Sir Sam Everington, Chair of NHS Tower Hamlets CCG; as well as workshops illustrating ways of promoting and enhancing sustainable social models to improve health and wellbeing and make the NHS and social care system more sustainable.  

Delegate pack, including agenda and biographies

You can view a video overview of the day and slides below.

Sustainability Air Quality Masterclass, Summer 2017

View the programme here and speakers’ slides here.

View Rick Lomax from the SDU talking about the HOTT tool below. 

Sustainability Masterclass, Spring 2017

The Power of Digital Technology to Sustainably Transform Health and Social Care View the programme here.

Click on the button below to view a recording of the webinar held on 28 March with presentations by Cathy Francis and Tim Clarke. (please note you may  need to install WebEx to watch)

View the film by Prof Keith McNeil below.

View pre-2017 SRSHN content.