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Title: Social prescribing : the perspectives of service users, providers and prescribers
Author: White, Jane Mary
ISNI:       0000 0004 2733 1715
Awarding Body: Glasgow Caledonian University
Current Institution: Glasgow Caledonian University
Date of Award: 2012
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Social prescribing aims to offer an alternative to pharmaceutical or psychological treatments for mild to moderate mental health problems that present in primary care. Social prescribing seeks to link people with community-based sources of support, which are provided outwith the traditional National Health Service (NHS). As such, it calls for collaborative working between three groups: service users, prescribers (health professionals), and providers of community-based activities. However, little is known about these stakeholders' perceptions of social prescribing as an acceptable and appropriate alternative care pathway. ~; ..• Drawing on the theory of social capital, this study aimed, firstly, to develop an understanding of the nature and potential of social prescribing as a means of health improvement. Secondly, it sought to identify factors that were likely to help or hinder' successful implementation. This qualitative, exploratory study adopted a case study methodology underpinned by a critical realist perspective. Three cases were selected purposively. Each was a community-based organisation offering activities which were being 'prescribed' by NHS health professionals. At each site, semi-structured interviews were carried out with a purposive sample of health professionals, service users and providers of the service (n=49). Findings indicate that service users were enthusiastic about the activities provided by the three community-based organisations. Processes of self-efficacy and social support appeared to have been facilitated by participatory person-centred relationships with service providers. These mechanisms were encouraged to operate by providers' creation of enabling contexts. Although challenges to the successful implementation of social prescribing were identified at individual, inter-personal, institutional and infra-structural levels, the findings suggest that social prescribing offers a promising alternative care pathway for people with mild to moderate mental health problems. It provides a holistic framework which, potentially, shifts the focus of care from an individual's deficiencies to their strengths, and from seeing people as passive recipients of services to active participants.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available