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Improving our understanding of population child health to enhance every child’s life course

The Public Health theme seeks to bring together clinicians, researchers, scientists, policy-makers and other stakeholders interested in improving our understanding of population child health. The School of Public Health at Imperial College London is the UK’s joint top institution for world-leading public health research. The School’s expertise addresses a broad range of public health challenges in infectious and parasitic diseases, cancer, cardiovascular and respiratory diseases, neurodegenerative disease, obesity and diabetes. With a spotlight on child public health, the School houses the Mohn Centre for Children’s Health and Wellbeing, focusing specifically on translational science to improve the life course of children living in urban environments and the Child Health Unit, focusing on research to improve child health through preventive primary care. An important part of our work is to use ‘real-world-data’ that is routinely collected to carry out national or large-scale population-based research without selection bias. This includes the use of the National Neonatal Research Database, the Department for Education’s National Pupil Database, WSIC, DISCOVER-NOW, and the Hospital Episode Statistics (HES), mortality registrations, cancer registrations, birth registrations, terminations data, and Data by National Congenital Anomaly and Rare Disease Registration Service (NCARDRS) via the Small Area Health Statistics Unit (SAHSU).

Improving population child health requires a multi-disciplinary approach and is happening not only within the School of Public Health but across multiple departments, faculties, and campuses at Imperial College. The aim of this theme is to connect everyone together to achieve better population child health through strengthening the public health science base, training the next generation of public health leaders and influencing health policies and programmes in the UK and around the world. We work closely with the Child and Adolescent Mental Health and Global Health themes, particularly to reduce health inequalities and on challenges that cross-national borders. Our mission is to ensure strong integration of our understanding of physical and mental health outcomes and to translate science and epidemiology into clinical care and policy to enhance the life course of every child, from pre-conception through to old age. Key to the success of this mission is our passion to involve children themselves and their parents and teachers in our research from the design stage all the way through to policy translation. With its research, teaching and evidence-led policy work, the Public Health theme aims to address the major public health challenges of the twenty-first century for our children.

2 Column general content block - Key research areas and theme leadership

Key research areas

  • Reducing health inequalities
  • Environmental impacts on health
  • Challenges of today’s urban environments for children
  • Children’s social connectivity and digital media use and its impacts on mental and physical health
  • Patient and Public Engagement and Involvement with children
  • Preventive primary care for children and families
  • Obesity prevention and improving health and wellbeing in schools
  • Improving transitional care of children and young people with long term conditions

Theme Lead

Professor Mireille Toledano
Mohn Chair; Population Child Health & Director-Mohn Centre

Mireille Toledano is a Professor of Perinatal and Paediatric Environmental Epidemiology, the Mohn Chair in Population Child Health and Director of the new Mohn Centre for Children’s Health and Wellbeing at Imperial College London.

She is an epidemiologist with wide-ranging interests in the health effects of environmental exposures in the reproductive period, and early life through to adolescence. Her research specialism is social connectivity and digital media use by children and its impacts on mental and physical health. She also has substantial expertise in leading the design, set-up and coordination of new large cohort studies and working with large routine health datasets.

Further information on Professor Toledano

Theme members