Royal Society for Public Health

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The Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH) is an independent charity formed in October 2008 following the merger of the Royal Institute of Public Health (RIPH) and the Royal Society of Health (RSH) -- two of the oldest professional bodies in the world.

The RIPH's origins date back to 1856 and the setting up of The Public Health Medical Society which was incorporated as the British Institute of Public Health in 1892. It gained royal patronage in 1897, and merged in 1937 with the Institute of Hygiene (established in 1903).

The RSH, also known as the Royal Society for the Promotion of Health, was established in 1876 following the landmark Public Health Act of 1875. Previously known as the Sanitary Institute (1876–1904) and the Royal Sanitary Institute (1904–55), it was born into a period of great change within the areas of public health provision and sanitary reform to which it contributed significantly. During its first fifty years, the Society became the leading public health organisation both in Great Britain and the rest of the world. It was soon renowned for events and conferences on pioneering and topical issues, and developed qualifications for people working in public health professions. By the 1950s, the Society was a leading authority in its field, and was regularly consulted by governments and the international press on health-related issues. Since the 1970s, the Society has focused its activities on the most successful areas of its work - examinations, certification, and the journals Public Health and Perspectives in Public Health.

Today, the RSPH is the longest-established public health organization in the United Kingdom. It is incorporated by Royal Charter completely independent of government and of any special interest. Members are academics, health professionals and practitioners who share an interest in promoting health through their daily work, and come together through Society membership to provide cross-cutting, multidisciplinary perspectives on current health questions. The Society has a total membership is approximately 6.500.

Fellows of the RSPH are entitled to use the initials FRSPH after their names. Fellows of its predecessor organisation RSH were allowed to use the initials FRSH after their names.

The RSPH is a national Qualifications Awarding Body with some 100,000 people qualifying through the RSPH each year. The Society has almost 1,600 approved training centres. The organisation is also an Accreditation and certification Body, recognised by the UK Accreditation Service (UKAS). The RSPH also manages the national NGO Forum for Health and looks after the database of practitioners on health promotion. Working closely with the Faculty of Public Health (FPH) of the Royal College of Physicians and the Institute of Health Promotion and Education (IHPE), the RSPH leads the implementation of the 'Shaping the Future' initiative in health promotion. Additionally, the Society acts as the host for the Network of Health Promotion Academics. RSPH staff provide technical advice to the World Health Organisation and increasingly work on public health initiatives overseas.

The RSPH publishes two peer reviewed and much respected journals, Perspectives in Public Health and Public Health, both of which have rapidly improving impact factors. Alongside the journals, the Society runs an active programme of national conferences and events.

The RSPH has its headquarters at two sites in London and can be contacted through its website,, or by telephone on 02072657300.

Woodruff fellowship[edit]

The Woodruff Fellow award is the most prestigious award offered by the society. This award covers all tuition and fees toward an MPH or MSPH degree plus a $5,000 stipend.

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