Public health means society's common endeavours to maintain, improve and promote peoples' health, while at the same time minimising factors that may pose a threat to health. The expression public health may also refer to the health status of the population in general and the ways in which that health varies among different social groups in the population. Public health measures should also contribute to reducing social differences in health.
Public health is an important aspect of Norway's Coordination Reform
Measures to prevent disease and improve health are important whether they are implemented within the health sector or elsewhere. Under the Public Health Act, primary responsibility for general public health efforts lies with the county councils and municipalities.
The County Governor shall ensure that consideration is given to public health
The County Governor has a duty to assist in the implementation of central government initiatives in the area of public health. Public health initiatives in general should aim to ensure sustainable social development. Planning is crucial for the achievement of this aim. The County Governor, by providing advice and guidance to municipalities and other authorities, must assist in ensuring that public health considerations form part of municipal, regional and central government planning. The County Governor has a responsibility to assist different entities in working together to provide collaborative care.
The County Governor has the power to carry out inspections to ensure that municipalities and county councils are fulfilling their public health obligations.