Welcome to BU's Centre for Public Health. Our main goal is to help people live better lives, for longer. Central to this, and the Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership’s (LEP) ‘One Health’ agenda, is public health. 

Led by Professor Ann Hemingway, the Centre for Public Health sits between the Faculty of Health & Social Sciences and the Faculty of Science & Technology. It builds on the the excellent work of the current BU Public Health Team, with further alignment across the areas of environmental science, psychology and technology.

The work of the Centre spans across disciplinary research and education and local, national and international activity, with a particular focus on:

  • Reducing inequality
  • Climate change
  • Lived experience and co-production
  • Nature and health.

Discover more about how we help people live better, for longer Explore Dorset LEP’s ‘One Health’ agenda

About Professor Ann Hemingway 

Professor Ann Hemingway next to a white horse

Professor Hemingway has been studying the horse-human relationship for the last ten years and works with a multidisciplinary group of researchers to explore the outcomes, impacts and mechanism of action of equine assisted services.

She has recently published a first for the global evidence on this area an observational study which has shown a reduction in domestic violence in families following attending an equine assisted service (Hemingway & Sullivan 2022).

She is an invited member of equine assisted services practitioner groups in the UK and internationally.

MSc Public Health

The Masters in Public Health is led by public health experts from our Centre for Public Health at BU complemented by subject specialists from across the university,  and accepts full and part time students and international and UK students (units are also available as CPD) please see the link on the right. The course focuses on reducing inequalities in health and climate change in an international and UK context and enables students to develop critical analytical skills and mastery of public health specialist knowledge and skills to enable them to succeed in practice, policy and research contexts.

Our research

Armed Services Trauma Rehabilitation Outcome Study - ADVANCE

 Professor Ahmed Khattab Professor Ahmed Khattab

Effective collaboration is at the heart of our Centre of Public Health approach to drive benefits for the general public. The collaborative relationship between Bournemouth University (BU) and University Hospitals Dorset (UHD) is long-established, with joint work and research across areas including stroke, vascular diseases, Parkinson's disease and more. 

Building on this success, Professor Christopher Boos (Poole Hospital) and Professor Ahmed Khattab (Bournemouth University) have been working together in collaboration with the Ministry of Defence (MoD) - as part of the ADVANCE Study, which is investigating the influence of serious battlefield traumatic injury (SBTI) on cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk in British servicemen.

ADVANCE is the Armed Services Trauma Rehabilitation Outcome Study, exploring the long-term physical and psycho-social outcomes of battlefield casualties from the UK Armed Forces following deployment to Afghanistan between 2002 and 2014.

The MoD collaboration with UHD-BU and with other UK universities on the ADVANCE study demonstrates their leadership in knowledge exchange and highlights the impact that collaborative research has on delivering world-leading research in health care, as evidenced in their recent joint publications and match-funded postgraduate research studentships. 

Forest bathing 

A large tree with bare branches

Professor Ann Hemingway, Dr Holly Crossen-White and Dr Jaqui Hewitt-Taylor from the centre are involved with nature related projects in collaboration with Dr Steven Trenoweth from the Faculty of Health and Social Sciences, the MINE research cluster in the Faculty of Science and Technology and the UK Forest Bathing Institute.

This work includes measurement of the physiological effects of forest bathing and exploring the use of VR to enable nature to be brought to those with limited physical access.

Impact of bespoke dance sessions for people living with Parkinson's disease 

A low angle image of feet in trainers dancing

Dr Liz Norton, Professor Ann Hemingway and Dr Caroline Ellis-Hill from Bournemouth University were commissioned by an arts charity to evaluate dancing sessions over several years, for people experiencing Parkinson’s.

The evaluation took place over four years, with a participatory approach adopted. 

Outputs from the project include a poem written by one of the researchers called What Goes On, which was made into a film with added music and pictures.

The film was shared with the dancers who have Parkinson's and others who went to the sessions to see if what it showed matched their experiences. 

Read the summary report 

Watch a version of the What Goes On film 

View an infographic explaining the research process 

The findings of the research were also published in an open access article: 

Norton, E., Hemingway, A. and Ellis Hill, C., 2023. The meaning and impact on well-being of bespoke dancing sessions for those living with Parkinson’s. International Journal of Qualitative Studies on Health and Well-being, 18 (1).

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