Update on Social Prescribing

Mon 12 Aug 2019

All Party Parliamentary Group on Loneliness - Westminster

Diane Claridge, Development Officer, attended the APPG (All Party Parliamentary Group) on Loneliness at Westminster on 15th July. The topic was Social Prescribing, chaired by Rachel Reeves MP and speakers included Simon Chapman, NHS England Deputy Director of Personalised Care and Tim Anfilogoff, NHS Social Prescribing Facilitator for the East of England.  We put a question on behalf of our members:  “At a time when many of our members are struggling to find appropriate funding streams and sufficient volunteers, they are increasingly concerned about the upsurge of referrals to their services as a result of social prescribing, what are the NHS, CCG’s and Local Authorities planning to do to address this concern”. 

There was also mention of the successes and challenges of the Connecting Communities project. If you have not yet read 'Tackling Loneliness and Social Isolation' Report of the Connecting Communities social prescribing project supported by the Co-op and The British Red Cross, download your copy here.

In Scotland there is currently a Parliamentary Inquiry into Social Prescribing

The Health and Sport Committee of the Scottish Parliament has launched an inquiry into social prescribing. 

‘Social prescribing’ is when GPs and other healthcare professionals prescribe sport, exercise and other recreational activities as a way to improve patients' health and wellbeing.

MSPs on the Committee want to hear from people across Scotland on the following issues:

  • Is social prescribing a suitable and appropriate alternative to traditional medicine orientated prescribing?
  • Can social prescribing for sport and physical activity lead to sustained participation in sporting activities?
  • Who should decide whether social prescribing is the best, most appropriate prescription for a patient?
  • What are the barriers to social prescribing? How can these be overcome?
  • How can we monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of social prescribing?

Anyone with an opinion, insight or lived experience of social prescribing, is encouraged to contact the Committee directly to let us know their views.

More information about the inquiry can be found here. To discuss this further contact the Committee directly on HealthandSport@parliament.scot or Tel: 0131 348 5224.

The closing date for the Inquiry is 30th August.