Summary of report content
Healthwatch Shropshire were asked by the Healthy Lives team at Shropshire Council to engage with the people of Shropshire regarding Social Prescribing. Social Prescribing is where we are ‘prescribed’ a social/community activity instead of a clinical solution. They reported on the following: main themes that come out of talking to people, what prevents people from accessing services, where are the vulnerable populations & why aren’t they being reached, where the possible gaps are.
Healthwatch used open structured interviews in person, over email and telephone to hear from people. They found a lot of people didn't know about social prescribing, and things like not wanting to bother their GP, lack of time and money led to barriers to accessing the services. The most vulnerable people were considered to be older people, people with mental health issues, on the autistic spectrum or with learning disabilities, those in poverty and without a support network.
Healthwatch provided recommendations, however did not receive a service response.