Only a small proportion of health outcomes are due to what the NHS does. Genetics, health behaviours and access to facilities beyond the NHS play a huge contribution. One example is the role of peer support and mutual aid. This is where people with a lived experience of something (eg mental health, addictions, diabetes, obesity, etc) come together to support one another. These groups play a huge role in supporting and sustaining recovery and wellbeing. There are three key determinants of a successful group. One is someone to set it up, two is copious amounts of tea and the third is somewhere to meet. In a rural context, the last point is the most challenging, especially for people suffering addictions. Often the only space available is a pub. Access to free public spaces to host such groups is almost impossible, Help rural communities to help themselves by investigating the availability and local council policies of provision of community spaces for community groups.
Great idea! Can Govt work with relevant organisations in rural communities (inc RSABI, Gamekeepers' Welfare Trust et al) to help inform the planning and roll out of work like this?
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