The Daily Telegraph

Prince praises pioneering ‘social prescribin­g’ scheme


THE Prince of Wales has offered his public support for “social prescribin­g”, saying sending patients to art classes, the great outdoors or exercise is “living proof ” that there is a world of help “beyond our convention­al medicines”.

The Prince, speaking during a visit to NHS staff in Cornwall, said there was “huge potential” in social prescripti­ons, which he described as an “immensely important and fast-developing field of the health service”.

Saying he had been a supporter of the concept for many years, he praised those “pioneering” the movement to offer patients non-medical interventi­ons “that can contribute to our health, wellbeing and healing”.

The Prince also praised GP surgeries for their “heroic” work during the pandemic, saying the nation owed them a “debt of gratitude”.

Visiting St Austell Healthcare with the Duchess of Cornwall, he heard how the practice used “social prescribin­g”, giving patients suggestion­s such as art classes or trips to an allotment, in a scheme pioneered by Dr Michael Dixon, the Prince’s medical adviser.

St Austell is a test site for the Institute for Social Prescribin­g hosted by the South West Academic Health Science Network.

Addressing around 30 staff outside the centre, the prince said it was “most heartening” to meet staff running the system that prescribes non-medical treatments to tackle lifestyle ailments.

He said: “They are living proof, if it was ever needed, that beyond our convention­al medicines and procedures there are so many other interventi­ons that can contribute to our health and healing.

“The work that you are doing here with an emphasis on the psychosoci­al as well as the biomedical, mobilising the whole community and exploring the limits of how we can help each other, is surely a lesson to us all.

“I can only say that what I have seen and heard today gives me enormous hope for the future.”

 ??  ?? The Prince of Wales said the nation owed GP surgeries a ‘debt of gratitude’ for their ‘heroic’ work during the pandemic
The Prince of Wales said the nation owed GP surgeries a ‘debt of gratitude’ for their ‘heroic’ work during the pandemic

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