Drink to new men's health report

15/08/16 . Blog

Written an excellent report that nobody's heard about?

Sadly, it happens all the time in public health and great intiatives full of great learning can be forgotten. So here's a question for you: which local Healthwatch launched their report into men's health with a pub quiz?

The answer is Blackburn with Darwen (BwD).

Their Men's Outreach report, based on visits to pubs and clubs over several months and talking to the men present, is a revealing insight into how local men feel and it's clear that the location of the interviews, places in which men felt comfortable speaking, enhanced the findings. More than one in five (21.5%) admitted to being lonely or isolated most or all of the time while nearly three quarters (72.5%) said that there was a stigma attached to mental health problems. The authors felt that 'fear of not being masculine enough was evident in many of the men' spoken to.

On services, 21.3% said that getting a GP appointment was a challenge – with many finding the so-called 'white jacket' image off-putting – and nearly a third (31%) said they didn't know how to find out about health and social care services.

The report was launched at Ewood Working Men's Club (opposite Blackburn Rovers football ground) with a pub quiz including questions based on the findings of the report. It was a brilliantly imaginative way of ensuring the findings are not forgotten and of meeting one of the expressed needs of the men interviewed: that men and women sometimes need to be communicated with in different ways.

So raise a glass to BwD for finding a novel way to turn a report into something real. Top marks.