What is Social Prescribing?
“Social prescribing involves helping patients to improve their health, well-being and social welfare by connecting them to community services which might be run by the council or a local charity.” NHS England
More than 1 in 4 patients see their doctor for purely social problems and welfare advice.
A Social Prescribing Extract from the NHS Long Term Plan
- Within 5 years 2.5m more people will benefit from Social Prescribing
- Range of support will diversify
- Link Workers within Primary Care Networks will develop tailored plans and link their clients to local clubs & societies
- There will be 1000+ trained Link Workers by 2020/21
- Aim is for over 900,000 referrals to Social Prescribing schemes
Gosport Voluntary Action delivers a number of life-changing Social Prescribing Projects including Surgery Signposting and our Services for Older People, delivered as part of the Close Encounters project.
Hants & IoW Social Prescribing Network
Co-ordinated by Gosport Voluntary Action and Community First, the Hampshire and IoW Social Prescribing Network was established in 2017. There are now 4 free Webinars or meetings per year countywide, as well as interim Social Prescribing updates and newsletters. The Network is funded by Hampshire’s Clinical Commissioning Groups and has 200 members who deliver, commission, or provide services for or support social prescribing projects countywide.
To register or for more information contact Lin Dudman:- Lin.Dudman@cfirst.org.uk
Latest News and Outcomes
On Wednesday 3 March 2021 c72 people (the highest to date!) attended the latest Hants & IoW Social Prescribing Network’s (HSPN) Webinar entitled ‘COVID-19 – Inequalities in Housing and Poverty’. The Webinar presenters came from Hampshire County Council, Hart District Council and the housing sector. Presenters shared their experience and expertise, including on the impact of COVID-19 for the Hampshire communities they support.
After new and existing HSPN members & guests were welcomed – Tim Houghton, Community First’s Chief Executive introduced the Webinar by explaining the impact of COVID-19 on Hampshire’s communities – how the conditions around individual’s impact upon them in terms of risk and also the additional complex layer of ethnicity. Tim then explained how the Voluntary Community and Social Enterprise sector is supporting those in need during the pandemic – using some countywide examples.
Rosie Fowler, Health and Wellbeing Project Officer, Hart District Council and Abbie Twaits, Senior Public Health Practitioner, HCC Public Health, Adults’ Health & Care highlighted the importance of housing as a social determinant of health. A range of impactful ‘Healthy Homes’ statistics and graphs were shared – illustrating the critical need for safe and stable homes. The presentation closed with a summary of training and signposting needs identified by a recent Workforce Development survey.
Next Ruth Goncalves, Housing Manager, Abri, began by defining the levels and causes of hoarding in Hampshire in terms of Compulsive/Generalist, Bibliomania and Animal hoarding. The characteristics of hoarding were explained, the correlation to fire safety, how the multi-agency response operates in terms of the hoarding journey and how Hampshire is responding to the increase in hoarding cases.
Finally, Angela Gill, Hants & IoW Social Prescribing Network (HSPN) Facilitator, shared highlights from the recent HSPN members’ survey. This identified some immediate training needs, how members are currently accessing support, which Social Prescribing organisations they are interested in and what barriers they are encountering during COVID-19. A response will follow from the HSPN Steering Group.
An engaged audience logged questions and observations via ‘Chat’ after each presentation.
Previous HSPN Webinars are also available on GVA’s Social Prescribing webpage. The next HSPN Webinar will place on Wednesday 16 June 2021 from 1-2pm. Please contact Lin.email@example.com to register if you are not an HSPN member and would like to attend and/or be kept up-to-date.
Previous News and Outcomes
• Hampshire & IoW Social Prescribing Network Webinar: ‘Mental Health Support During COVID-19 and Beyond…’
On Tuesday 1 December 2020, c70 people (the highest yet!) attended the latest Hants & IoW Social Prescribing Network’s Webinar entitled ‘Mental Health Support During COVID-19 and Beyond…’
The Webinar presenters came from a wide cross-section of Hampshire’s Community & Voluntary and Mental Health sectors – to share their experiences and expertise during COVID-19, to update attendees about their current services/challenges and to answer a range of engaging questions.
After new and existing members and guests were welcomed:
Tim Houghton, Community First’s Chief Executive introduced the Webinar by putting into context the community & voluntary sector support, new initiatives such as the High Intensity Users out of hours support and the challenges that the sector is currently facing. Tim then handed over to Helen Fisher, Strategic Lead for Physical Activity and Health, Energise Me – who highlighted the importance of keeping active for people’s physical and mental health & wellbeing. Helen went on to briefly described three existing and new Energise Me projects.
Elizabeth White Ripley, Head of Wellbeing, Solent Mind described the geographical structure of Solent Mind, going on to explain the 5 Steps to Wellbeing and how Solent Mind’s flexible recovery programme is helping people during the COVID-19 period.
Next Jonathan Foley and Amy Francis – Clinical Lead Service Managers for italk explained what italk does, going on to describe their core and longer term services, common mental health problems, the Stepped Care Model, what treatments are on offer and how they can be accessed, the relationship between physical and mental health, the type of interventions available and the impact on people in need where they are unable to access the therapy they need, italk’s employment advisors and the range of partnerships italk are engaged with.
Jason Hope, Programme Management Lead – Hants & IoW Sustainable Transformation Partnership’s No Wrong Door – Community Mental Health Transformation, summarised what the transformation programme aims to achieve, the national model, how the programme will transform people’s experience in three ways, the programme phases and the structure of the mental health programme board.
Last but definitely not least was a short, informative presentation by Mike Newman, Senior Public Health Practitioner, HCC Adults Health & Care, who showed extracts from a new range of Mental Health and Wellbeing Guides offering practical support for adults – covering Five Ways to Wellbeing, Every Mind Matters, One You and Apps. Mike also illustrated the Additional Support information and where that can be accessed from eg GP, local talking therapy, wellbeing centres, how to access urgent help, top tips and mental health and wellbeing training.
An engaged audience logged questions and observations after each presentation.
• Hampshire & IoW Social Prescribing Network Webinar
‘Tackling Social Isolation’
Tuesday 8 September 2020
On 8 September 2020 the Hants & IoW Social Prescribing Network delivered their 3rd topical Webinar entitled ‘Tackling Social Isolation’. It generated the most interest of any HSPN Webinar or Meeting since the network began – with an amazing 64 attendees!
A range of engaging presenters shared their experience and learning around ‘Tackling Social Isolation’ – which has become ever more important during COVID-19.
Community First’s Tim Houghton (Chief Executive) started by highlighting the Community & Voluntary Sector’s Experience of Social Isolation during COVID-19. Tim explained that social isolation doesn’t just affect older people, whilst illustrating the impact of isolation on both mental and physical health.
Age UK Portsmouth’s Close Encounters Project Manager Alex Massey introduced the Close Encounters Project – explaining how partnership working (including with Gosport Voluntary Action) is practically enhancing the quality of life for in a number of innovative ways (particularly during COVID-19) for isolated older people across greater Portsmouth and Gosport.
HCC Adults’ Health and Care’s Strategic Development Manager for Demand Management and Prevention Peter Stokes spoke about increasing social connectivity in Hampshire, detailing a SWOT analysis of what is working well, potential risks, what’s been difficult and emerging options to explore.
Last and definitely not least, Kellie Payne, Research & Policy Manager from the Campaign to End Loneliness, introduced the audience to the findings from a ground-breaking Research Report entitled ‘The Psychology of Loneliness’ – why it matters and what we can do. Kellie summarised the mental effects of loneliness and potential approaches to address it – Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Mindfulness and Positive Psychology. A fascinating practical exploration of what can be done ensued, concluding with achievable recommendations and a practical call to action.
An engaged audience logged questions and observations after each presentation. Virtual networking and information & the sharing of contact details were evidenced via the Webinar’s ‘Chat’ facility too!
The next HSPN Webinar will focus upon Mental Health and takes place on Tuesday 1 December 2020 from 1-2pm (plus networking). Please contact Lin.firstname.lastname@example.org to register, or if you would like to join the Network.
• Social Prescribing Network Newsletter, August 2020
Download the newsletter here
• Hampshire & IoW Social Prescribing Network Webinar
‘Understanding Hampshire’s Changing Health Structures’
Thursday 16 July 2020
On 16 July, the Hants & IoW Social Prescribing Network delivered their 2nd topical webinar. Strategic colleagues from the Hants & IoW Partnership of Clinical Commissioning Groups, HCC’s Public Health and Community First updated the 53 live attendees, often mentioning the importance of taking a local approach to local services. The panel then responded to an interesting range of questions.
Tim Houghton, Chief Executive, Community First, explained how Community First particularly in respect of health and wellbeing/COVID-19 are working in partnership with the Clinical Commissioning Group, Hampshire County Council, District Councils and a range of Voluntary Sector Partners, to support the most vulnerable groups during this period. He thanked all those supporting vulnerable communities, describing how COVID-19 exposed fragile social networks. New solutions will need to be devised by working together including supporting those with mental health needs. Tim asked how we could build resilience as we move forward, whilst challenging & changing what we currently do.
Tim Cooling, Hampshire & IoW Partnership of Clinical Commissioning Groups, briefly discussed the NHS Long Term Plan and Integrated Care Systems will focus upon public health across Hampshire and the IoW and Hampshire’s 42 Primary Care Networks by 2021. Working with Local Authorities, the Voluntary Sector and Integrated Community Partnerships will work more efficiently, at scale but also locally where appropriate. This will hopefully enable the Voluntary Sector to become more sustainable.
Ros Hartley, Executive Director, Strategy and Transformation, Hampshire & IoW Partnership of Clinical Commissioning Groups, explained how some plans had to change/fast track to work differently as a result of COVID-19. She explored what should be kept from COVID and what needs to stop going forward and the importance of protecting people out of hospital in a different way. How do decisions get made as close to people & patients as possible? A vulnerable group of people have been identified now – outcomes need to be consistent. Seacole services is one example of best practice that was discussed, alongside the value of getting better community services locally in partnership. Now is a real opportunity to do things better and/or differently.
Jenny Erwin, West Hampshire and Isle of Wight Partnership of Clinical Commissioning Groups, stated that COVID is a major NHS level 4 incident; it is also about community recovery and the trauma they have experienced (faith groups, pockets of deprivation, minority communities, etc.). It is necessary to work with whole communities to provide mental health support, either direct or in partnership, addressing social anxiety/social isolation with local communities. People are experiencing secondary health mental health services or not coming forward to access them; services need to meet latent demand some digital interventions but face-to-face is often the preferred approach. COVID survivors require ongoing support (the trauma of being in hospital or on a ventilation during this period). Support is also required for frontline workers, retrained fire officers who drove ambulances, and the bereaved who were unable to see their family before they died or have a proper funeral. Children and young people can face long waiting lists; many have been out of school for some time with some safeguarding issues.
Simon Bryant, Director of Public Health, Hampshire County Council, described the current pandemic that has affected people and services. He described the local outbreak control plan of how the pandemic is managed locally to prevent infection and reduce outbreaks, eg. in local pubs. It focuses upon care homes, schools, high risk settings or communities, increased likelihood, eg. meat packing plants, custodial venues, etc. Also testing and contact tracing locally and the data underpinning this, vulnerable/shielding people, Health Protection Board, etc. He asked that we don’t forget social distancing and handwashing.
References were made to the previous Hants & IoW Social Prescribing Network Webinar, which is available below (in ‘Previous News and Outcomes’). A range of interesting live questions and responses from members of the panel then ensued.
If you would like to register for the next Hants & IoW Webinar on Tuesday 8 September, 1-2pm (plus networking), which will focus on social isolation, or would like more information, please email Lin Dudman on email@example.com
• Social Prescribing Network Newsletter, June 2020
Download the newsletter here
• Hampshire & IoW Social Prescribing Network Webinar
‘How Social Prescribing & Local Services are Adapting to COVID-19?’
Tuesday 19 May 2020
The Hants & IoW Social Prescribing Network held its first ever Webinar on Tuesday 19 May 2020. The event was attended by 43 delegates (attendance list). There was a regional Social Prescribing update from GVA & Community First. There were also a series of short presentations from:
- Hampshire County Council
- Citizens Advice Hampshire
- Age Concern Hampshire
- British Red Cross
- Hants & IOW Partnership of CCG
- Three local Social Prescribers/Health Coaches, giving updates on how their roles have changed during the COVID-19 period
The webinar is available to watch online here:
Paul Bright, Chief Executive at Citizens Advice Hampshire outlines how NHS staff in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight can refer patients to the Home and Well NHS Direct Referral Service.
Home and Well advisor Lorraine explains how she helps people solve problems.
Resources & Links
Age Concern Gosport www.ageconcerngosport.org.uk
NHS England Social Prescribing www.england.nhs.uk
The Social Prescribing Network, including news and events www.socialprescribingnetwork.com