More take control of health and wellbeing thanks to new service
Published: 29th May 2019
A new service launched earlier this year has already helped more than 150 people to take more control of their health and wellbeing.
The Wellbeing Service is up and running in Eden and Keswick & Solway Integrated Care Communities (ICCs) to support adults with multiple long term physical health conditions or a recent change in life circumstances.
The service recognises that people’s health is affected by a range of social, economic and environmental factors. Taking a social prescribing approach, it helps to connect people with voluntary organisations and community resources to support their non-medical and psychological needs. It also aims to:
- promote self-management of long term conditions
- help people to feel more confident in the management of their health
- support people to set personalised goals to improve their quality of life and feel more in control
- release GP time by supporting patients in the most appropriate way
The service is made up of living well coaches and wellbeing activators who are based in GP practices and form a key part of primary care teams. Silloth Group Medical Practice has had a Living Well Coach within the practice for over two months. Dr Jens Stahlschmidt said:
“Our Living Well Coach, Simon, is a real asset to the surgery and the local community. The feedback from patients has been really positive with comments such as “I have my life back” and “I didn’t think there was anything out there for me”. Simon has already proved invaluable by coordinating complex care arrangements and making real life changes for our patients, helping with social isolation and loneliness.”
One service user in Eden said: “The Wellbeing Service put me back on the right track after other counselling had failed in the past. It was exactly what I needed when I needed it. I would recommend this service to anyone.”
In addition, the service is also supporting Walking for Health schemes, in partnership with Active Cumbria, and running a programme of group sessions to provide information and strategies to improve health and wellbeing. These are open to all and cover topics such as:
- psychological wellbeing
- healthy choices
The Walking for Health routes are 20-30 minutes long to encourage people to get out, take part in gentle exercise, enjoy themselves and meet other people. Walking has many benefits including weight loss, making people feel more energetic and lifting low mood.
Tracey Williams, Clinical Lead for the Wellbeing Service, added: “I could not be more proud to be a part of this team. The living well coaches are already doing some outstanding work with patients and beginning to establish themselves as a social prescribing part of the jigsaw. The wellbeing activators provide excellent support to the coaches in their areas and are also working as a link with the wider ICC teams. It is really exciting to see how full of promise the service is and I am looking forward to watching it grow and become embedded within our communities.”
If you live in Eden, Keswick or Solway and think you could benefit from this service please speak to your GP practice.
Group sessions are open to adults living in Eden, Keswick or Solway and need to be booked in advance by contacting WellBeing@cumbria.nhs.uk or 01768 245954.
Walking for Health groups run across Cumbria, full details are available at: https://www.walkingforhealth.org.uk/walkfinder/cumbria-walking-for-health
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