The first Minister of Public Health

The Labour Party manifesto in 1997 claimed that the party wanted to save the NHS and would launch a new drive to improve public health.

Labour pledged to appoint a new public health minister to tackle the causative factors of ill health, to better lives and save the NHS money in the long term. Other proposed initiatives included a ban on smoking advertising and tackling the social determinants of health, such as:

  • environment
  • poverty
  • unemployment
  • housing.

Following Labour's election, Tessa Jowell was appointed the first Minister of Public Health.


Labour Party.
New Labour: because Britain deserves better (manifesto).
Labour Party; 1997.

Olsen N.
At last, a public health minister.
1997; 314(7093): 1498–1499.