Published Tuesday, 20th March 2018

The Wellbeing Prescription service, which offers free health and wellbeing support to residents, has just had its contract extended for a further three years.

It is now one of the largest signposting services in the country and its team of 14 Wellbeing Advisors will see over 4,000 people a year.

The Wellbeing Prescription team with Rebeka Pope, Commissioning Development Manager at East Surrey CCG; Belinda Purcell, Corporate Policy Manager for Tandridge District Council (seated) and Helen Dredge, Health and Wellbeing Manager at Reigate & Banstead The advisors are based in GP surgeries and help residents by identifying their health and wellbeing issues, providing advice and signposting them to local services and activities. The service is jointly run by Reigate & Banstead Borough Council, Tandridge District Council, Surrey County Council and East Surrey CCG.

88% of people who have used the Wellbeing Prescription service made a positive change to their lifestyle and 78% have visited their GP less since using the service. The advisors help people with issues such as weight management, fitness, smoking cessation, social isolation and support with depression, anxiety and more.

In addition there is Wellbeing Prescription Plus.This is the same service, but offered to high dependency patients, for example people who may already have been diagnosed with diabetes, dementia or arthritis. The Wellbeing Prescription Plus service will visit these patients in their homes to make sure they are accessing all available services to address their complex needs.

Positive lifestyle change

Councillor Ros Mill, Executive Member for Leisure and Wellbeing, at Reigate & Banstead Borough Council, said: “The Wellbeing Prescription service provides a holistic approach enabling our residents to successfully manage their own health and wellbeing to make positive lifestyle changes. Our joined-up approach focused on prevention will reduce the burden on health care providers longer term. Our Health and Wellbeing and Community Development Teams are working with Commissioning Groups, Adult Social Care, Public Health and the voluntary sector to further develop the service to identify vulnerable adults, tackle social isolation and reduce GP referrals.”

Councillor Martin Fisher, Leader of Tandridge District Council, said: “We are passionate about the work we do to support the health and wellbeing of residents in our area and are extremely proud to have worked as a partnership to create one of the largest and most comprehensive wellbeing services in the country. Not only does it reduce pressure on primary care services like GPs, crucially it offers joined up patient focused care and supports the health of our residents.”

Paul Hamilton, who is a GP at Caterham Valley and the Clinical Lead for East Surrey, said: “The Wellbeing Advisors have been a huge asset at our surgery; they offer that additional care to patients and help make a huge difference to the everyday lives of residents in our community. They are filling a gap where previously there was nobody doing the work they do, helping patients and staff alike.”

Sarah Ford, East Surrey’s Senior Commissioning Manager for Surrey County Council, said: “The involvement of the Wellbeing Prescription services leads to a range of positive health and wellbeing outcomes for people and a focus on prevention that helps reduce the pressure on social care and primary health services. The Wellbeing Advisors are a huge asset and do a fantastic job signposting and supporting East Surrey residents to engage with a broad range of services that can help address social, economic and health issues.”

More information

To make an appointment with a Wellbeing Advisor, contact your local GP surgery.

For more information about the service see the Wellbeing Prescription page.