Greater Manchester embraces social prescribing to improve mental health and wellbeing

Across Greater Manchester more people are being given ‘prescriptions with a difference’, connecting them with community-based groups and activities that will help them feel better without medicine. The innovative and growing movement aims to provide support for all aspects of people’s emotional, social and physical wellbeing.

Research shows that 90% of health problems are affected by the patient’s wellbeing. Social prescribing can be an alternative or addition to traditional medication which aids recovery by matching people with non-clinical support services such as befriending schemes, physical activities, social clubs, housing and debt support and much more.

Through new and improved links built through devolution and added funding, Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership, the voluntary sector, and statutory bodies such as GPs, hospitals and social services are working together to develop structured local social prescribing models that are tailored to the individual.

Speaking about social prescribing, Jon Rouse, Chief Officer at Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership, said: “Devolution has given us the perfect opportunity to bring together the great work of the voluntary sector and create connections with statutory bodies so we can support people differently. Our ambition is for every locality in Greater Manchester is to have a social prescribing model that works for their area and improves the lives, and wellbeing, of those that live there.

“Mental health and wellbeing is as important as physical wellbeing and the two are very closely linked. Connecting people to their local community and activities that will enrich and improve their life can make a world of difference; building people’s confidence and helping them to feel better.”

To find out more and to view a a video chronicling a service user's experience of social prescribing click here

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