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Public Health (Wales) Act 2017

Policy Background

3.The health and well-being of the population of Wales is continuing to improve. In general, people are living longer and enjoy better health than ever before. However, Wales still faces a number of specific and significant health challenges. These range from overarching demographic challenges such as an ageing population and continuing inequalities in health, to more discrete ones posed by lifestyle choices and contemporary developments within society.

4.Legislation has historically played an important role in improving and protecting health. Legislation in areas as varied as the ban on smoking in enclosed public places and wearing seat-belts has been seen to make significant contributions to health and well-being.

5.This Act was developed following consultation on a Public Health White Paper, which included a series of legislative proposals to address a number of public health issues in Wales. The focus of the Act is on shaping social conditions that are conducive to good health, and where possible, avoiding health harms that can be averted.

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Explanatory Notes

Text created by the Welsh Government department responsible for the subject matter of the Act to explain what the Act sets out to achieve and to make the Act accessible to readers who are not legally qualified. Explanatory Notes accompany all Acts of the Welsh Parliament.


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