New information sharing standard to support social prescribing

Social prescribing helps connect people to services that can improve their health and wellbeing, and sharing information is key to ensuring people get the support they need in the community. PRSB has  published a standard that will help ensure the right information flows between services to support better care and outcomes for people using social prescribing. 

PRSB were asked by NHS England and NHS Improvement to develop an information standard to record an individual’s experience of social prescribing:

  1. To support people providing social prescribing services
  2. To support individuals experiencing social prescribing
  3. To support the information needed for secondary purposes (local and national) e.g reporting.

It was developed in consultation with a wide range of professionals, including link workers and GPs, and people who use services including representatives from Scotland, England, Northern Ireland and Wales. Through consultation workshops and a survey they agreed what information is essential to share to provide well-coordinated care.

The social prescribing standard will benefit people using social prescribing and those providing care including GPs, Link Workers and voluntary groups/charities and social enterprises (VCSE organisations).  Social prescribing plays an important part in the national drive to support citizen empowerment and personalised care, across the four nations of the UK. The standard enables digital sharing of information safely and in a consistent, readable format, so that professionals have access to the right information when they need it, individuals won’t have to repeat their story and can become more involved in their care and self-care.

Liverpool-based link worker, Sarah Moreton, was the professional lead for the project:  ‘As a social prescriber, I know how difficult it is to capture everything discussed in a session in a consistent format that can be shared with colleagues from other care providers. I often find myself spending more time tracking information from previous sessions that could be spent working with an individual to help them meet their needs and goals. I was delighted to work with PRSB on this standard and am confident that when implemented, it will help Link Workers like me to administer high-quality care and support the true value and impact of social prescribing’.

The standard will also empower people using social prescribing services. PRSB Chair, Maureen Baker, said: ‘Better information sharing in social prescribing will allow people to take control of their care.  With accessible information records, people can be assured that their information is correct and available whenever and wherever they need to receive care’.

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