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hvoss (Herefordshire Voluntary Organisations Support Service)

15 Mar 2017

hvoss and Fownhope Medical Centre pioneer an innovative ‘social prescribing’ project for Herefordshire


hvoss is working in partnership with Fownhope Medical Centre to pilot a ‘social prescribing’ project. hvoss has recruited Sue Brazendale as a Community Link Officer for the project starting in March in the village of Fownhope offering a community referral service initially for an 18 month period.

Frequently patients present at the GP practice looking for support for non-clinical needs for which medicine isn’t always the best or only answer with social solutions able to provide better outcomes.

This new approach of social prescribing for the area will offer a community referral service linking patients to activities provided by social and community groups that will positively impact on their health and wellbeing.

Participating in activities and accessing support from within the community can help tackle isolation, empower patients and also encourage supported management for a range of conditions.

Gareth Blackett, Interim Chief Executive of hvoss said “While we all recognise and value the vital clinical solutions that medical practitioners can provide increasingly the voluntary and community sector can support patients with social activities that can enable successful health outcomes. We are delighted to work with Fownhope Medical centre to pilot this approach in Herefordshire which has been funded by the Fownhope and District Medical Trust. Our new Community Link Officer, Sue Brazendale, has a wealth of experience from similar work she has done in Bristol which will prove invaluable to the success of the Herefordshire pilot. The Wellbeing and Information Service for Herefordshire (WISH) will also be a key element of the project infrastructure”.

Carolyn Hattersley, Practice Manager at Fownhope Medical Centre added “We are delighted to be able to provide this new service to support our patients, especially those who would benefit from non-medical support. We are extremely grateful to the Fownhope and District Medical Trust for funding the venture.  Fownhope Medical Centre has always endeavoured to be at the heart of its community and we hope that this project will grow these links further for the benefit of the local population and our patients”.

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