Social prescribing is the practice where health professionals, including GPs, have the resources and infrastructure to link patients with social services – or even social groups – in a bid to address the social determinants contributing to poor health and stave off the epidemic of loneliness and social isolation. A GP may, for example, suggest a patient join a local running group to enjoy the benefits of exercise and interaction.
The Australian Government is currently developing long-term plans for both primary healthcare and preventive health. This presents an opportunity to incorporate social prescribing into future health system planning and service delivery strategies.
CHF has partnered with the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) and the NHMRC Partnership Centre for Health System Sustainability to host a roundtable on social prescribing in Australia. This stimulus paper in support of the November 2019 roundtable can now be viewed.
The report on the roundtable was released in February 2020.
Media release: A new type of prescribing for Australian patients (media release)