What is Social Prescribing?
Social prescribing is being implemented across Shropshire. This is a means where GPs, Nurses and others working in healthcare services refer people into non-clinical services, which can support their emotional health and wellbeing.
People with a ‘prescription’ are referred to a link worker who will provide support in enabling someone to access to a range of non-clinical support services delivered in the local community, usually by the VCSE (Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise) sector.
Social prescribing can help many people in our communities, including the socially isolated or the vulnerable, which can also help to reduce pressure on services as people feel more emotionally supported and able to cope.
There is a need to create a local model that builds on (and does not duplicate) existing Shropshire initiatives, such as care co-ordination, compassionate communities, and locality commissioning, and which provides support for the third sector in a climate of financial austerity.
Is this in my area yet?
This is a new model for Shropshire, and will be rolled out across the county in stages. A demonstrator site has been operational in Oswestry since May 2017 to help contribute toward the growing evidence of the impact of social prescribing and work out the practicalities of running a local service. Expansion of the programme to new areas will commence Autumn 2017 with interest already shown and exploratory discussions held with GP practices in other areas of Shropshire.
How do I find out more?
Shropshire is the Social Prescribing lead area in the Midlands. A conference was held on the 27th April 2017 in Derby. Click here for more details on the Network page.