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Young people's future health inquiry Aiming to build the policy, research and place-based agenda to improve the future health of today’s young people


Latest from the inquiry: the action phase

The action phase of the Young people’s future health inquiry is now underway. The inquiry aims to build the policy, research and place-based agenda so that it recognises the ages of 12–24 as significant for health in the long term. 

Through the Emotional Support for Young People programme – running to 2024 – the Health Foundation is funding four teams to research the effects of the wider determinants of health on young people’s experiences of support.

From 2020 to 2023, the Health Foundation is also funding five policy posts across a range of organisations to build the policy agenda and amplify the voices of young people. Each post has explored one of the important topics that emerged in the listening phase of the inquiry.

The policy post-holders are working within their organisations to develop and test policy ideas, as well as working with stakeholders in their sector. The Health Foundation is supporting the group to work together, sharing their ideas and learnings to strengthen the policy agenda further.

The inquiry so far

The Health Foundation commissioned Kantar Public, an independent social research agency, which partnered with Livity, a youth engagement specialist, to conduct an engagement exercise with young people living in the UK aged 22–26 years. The aim was to discover the factors that helped or hindered them in their transition to adulthood.

We went to five UK towns and cities and listened to the perspectives of young people and youth organisations about access to the assets needed for a healthy transition into adulthood. Our visits uncovered common themes and a strong sense of place, shaping the young people’s identity and how they described themselves.

Our final report brings together all of the learnings from the Inquiry, exploring the factors that are putting the UK’s 12–24-year-olds at risk of ill-health later in life, and introducing the policy analysis that has taken place. As part of this, we also commissioned nine expert partner organisations to publish their recommendations for young people’s needs to be put at the centre of government policy making, focusing in seven policy areas.

We commissioned with the Association of Young People’s Health and UCL’s Institute of Child Health to carry out research that would inform the Inquiry’s analysis. We published four working papers:


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