Pressures on doctors and hospitals are to be relieved by a new Wandsworth health service launched yesterday aimed at directing residents to alternative support options.
The Wandsworth Wellbeing Hub set up by the NHS Wandsworth Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) will be an online and telephone resource helping people with medical management enquiries.
The telephone line, run by community navigators, aims to put people in touch with self-help and support services within the area to reduce unneccesary trips to A&E that increase hospital waiting times.
More and more telephone lines have been created following the closure of NHS Direct last year prompting councils to produce their own regional versions.
Chair of the CCG, Dr Nicola Jones, said: “There are so many fantastic services in Wandsworth to help people improve their health and wellbeing but our patients were coming into their GP surgery not knowing about them.”
The services available span a variety of different issues from activities and groups to help with weight-loss and smoking to classes on managing long-term illnesses.
Counselling is available for those with depression or anxiety.
Hospitals have been increasingly looking to reduce unnecessary walk-ins since the closure of health resources across London, as reported by SW Londoner.
Dr Jones said: “The Hub is the gateway to a superb range of really helpful, practical information and support available at the click of a button or one telephone call.
“We hope this kind of community resource will give people access to the support they are looking for to get healthier, reduce social isolation and improve feelings of wellbeing.”
Community Navigators can be reached via phone Mondays to Fridays 9am to 5pm on 0208 8126700 or visit the website http://www.wandsworthccg.nhs.uk/hub
Picture courtesy of Lucas Hayas, with thanks