The learning over the last five years viewed through the lens’ of individual partners including citizens in the population we serve has repeatedly identified prevention and early intervention as a key strand of improving value.
This has been recognised in national strategy; part of the focus in the NHS Long Term Plan and the new GP Contract (Primary Care Networks) is around social prescribing.
Professor Sir Muir Gray says ‘the term primary care is a misnomer. The first thing citizens and patients do is think what they can do for themselves, the second is to seek advice from friends and family and in the last twenty years the Internet. Then they seek professional help’. The stories of patients with a range of complex problems, suggest that the lack of support and advice from family, friends, community or trusted advocates, results in increasing reliance on high-cost professional services/interventions. Addressing their social isolation and defining with them the kind of support, advice and companionship which could support and reassure them (creating a ‘Sympathy group’) may offer a more effective non-medical intervention?
Haverstock is working with UCL to explore and evaluate the impact of providing non-medical support and interventions to reduce reliance on health and care services and improve citizens health.