The History of Public Health-from Brewers to Sewers

Ref: C3842795

We are living longer lives than ever; scientific discoveries, new medicines, better nutrition have all had a significant effect. A century ago influenza took the the lives of millions. Today many dangerous diseases have been eradicated, but we face new challenges to achieving good health. The NHS is facing a severe crisis This course will examine the history of public health. We will look at the provision of clean water and sewage; the provision of public housing; health and safety legislation; pollution and clean air. We will look at the establishment of the National Health Service.

Course aim

This course will look at the history of public health in order to provide insight and a better understanding of the health challenges we face today.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Explain what has led to the biggest improvements in public health
  • Better understand the history and politics of public health
  • Understand the challenges to maintaining public health today

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning
  • Includes a visit to the archives of People's History Museum

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • You will have opportunities to discuss your progress with your tutor

What else do I need to know?

  • Nothing else is needed
  • All materials will be provided

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • Reading either the printed material provided and/or articles online will be a requirement for students to gain the most from this course

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • Assist progress in a career in health

Download full course information sheet

The History of Public Health-from Brewers to Sewers


As a registered charity, and to meet our funders’ requirements, we need to check a few things with you before you book. Please could we ask that you check the list below to ensure you meet our basic criteria:

  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2018
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

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