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Education for Health celebrates its 30th anniversary

Education for Health is celebrating 30 years of improving the lives of people with long-term conditions

The education charity will mark this important milestone by sharing the stories of 30 people involved in its success on its website and social media channels — one each day in June.

It is also offering healthcare professionals the opportunity to apply for 30th anniversary bursaries and to attend a number of its workshops for just £30.

Chief executive, Monica Fletcher OBE, said thanks to the ambition, passion and hard work of its staff, trainers, trustees and partners, that the charity has grown from humble beginnings into a highly respected leader in providing education for healthcare professionals.

‘It’s time to celebrate, to thank those who have contributed to our success, reflect on our achievements and make ambitious plans for the future,’ she said.

‘Over the years we have empowered many thousands of healthcare professionals, not just in the UK but around the world, to improve the lives of their patients. This is something we are immensely proud of.

And, while we have grown and evolved significantly over the past 30 years, we have remained true to our founder’s vision, which is that we exist to improve the lives of people with long-term conditions.’

Greta Barnes MBE founded the Asthma Training Centre in Stratford-upon-Avon in 1987 as she was aware that too many patients with asthma in the community (and secondary care) were being seen in an emergency, and sometimes life threatening, situation.

She believed that the route to improved management lay in organised preventive care, personally tailored treatment and the giving of practical advice as well as regular follow-up and review.

In the early days students attended a three-day course in Stratford-upon-Avon and were awarded the Diploma in Asthma Care. Within two years of being set up, a regional training network had been established to cope with demand.

Today, Education for Health delivers education and training across a wide range of long-term conditions, including respiratory disease, cardiovascular disease and diabetes. In 2016 it educated more than 4,800 individuals and ran 340 courses ranging from workshops to level 5, 6 and 7 modules.

The charity also offers bespoke training to meet specific needs of commissioners in the NHS and other organisations, and provides a number of free-to-access online resources.

All of the charity’s education leads and trainers are practising clinicians who sit on a wide range of specialist networks, advisory boards, voluntary, NHS and professional bodies, and guideline development groups.

As for the next 30 years, Education for Health has ambitious plans.

‘The charity’s role in helping to create a well-informed and well-educated workforce will be more important than ever and we will explore new ways of working to have a positive impact on the lives of even more people with long-term conditions,’ explained Monica.

‘Above all, we will remain focused on improving the lives of many more patients and doing the best we can to empower, encourage and support them to look after themselves, manage their condition and navigate health services.’

Find out more about Education for Health at, or find the charity on facebook and twitter @EdforHealth

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