Social prescribing (also known as community referral) is a method that enables health professionals to refer people to local services (non-clinical). The referrals usually come from GP's, practice nurses or others working in primary care. Social prescribing seeks to address people's needs holistically by supporting individuals to take greater control of their health. It is designed to help people with various conditions, which are usually related to social and emotional wellbeing or practical needs for everyday life. Programmes that deliver social prescribing may involve activities traditionally provided by the community and third sector organisations. For example, art activities, hobby activities, community gardening, befriending, cooking, and various sports. People who may benefit from social prescribing include people with mild or long-term mental health problems, complex needs, or those who are socially isolated.
A job in social prescribing usually involves being a link worker, based in a GP surgery, health centre of community organisation. Tasks may include:
Your salary as a link worker (social prescriber) will usually be between £20K and £27K a year, depending on whereabouts you work.
There are no set qualifications needed to become a social prescriber because life experience and personal qualities are more valued than qualifications.