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Social prescribing to tackle loneliness

East Herts Social Prescribing Service (EHSPS) launched this support service in January 2018 for residents who are feeling lonely, isolated or living with anxiety and mild depression.

During these last 14 months more than 200 patient referrals have already been received from GPs and other health professionals. 

Our social prescribing coordinator, Kathrine Foy, contacted these residents to agree a joint plan of action to encourage them to consider joining a wide range of local social and activity community groups. A follow-up meeting was arranged 12 weeks later to reflect on how the resident is currently feeling and offered further support if needed.

The majority of referrals who now attend a local weekly social group say they are feeling better  about their general wellbeing and happiness. And as a result some are attending their GP surgeries less frequently.

We work collaboratively with numerous established community groups and refer our patients/residents to the most appropriate venue based on their interests and locality. A prime example of such a group is the  Apton Road Day Centre where residents can participate in a wide range of activities such as arts and crafts, gentle Yoga sessions, and Spanish lessons.