When many people access the NHS, it could be the answer lies not in medical treatment but in community support or activities in their local neighbourhood.
The Community Wellbeing Service, a joint NHS and Gloucestershire County Council service, has gone from strength to strength this year proving to be a vital link between healthcare professionals and help in the community. It forms part of the innovative social prescribing initiative which helps people with mainly non-medical needs who go to their surgery or other health services.
More than 1,000 people have been given one to one support with social prescribing facilitators and/or community wellbeing agents this year. They help connect people to community groups, services and activities in their area which can help improve their wellbeing. Referrals can come from GPs and other healthcare professionals, friends or family, or people can self-refer.