Adur and Worthing project supporting hundreds of people shortlisted for national award

Tuesday 25th June, 2019

A project which has seen more than 1,000 people referred by their GPs for help in combating problems in their personal lives is a finalist for a national award.

The ‘Going Local’ project enables local GPs to be able to refer patients if they think that their non-medical problems might also be impacting on their health.

Those referred are helped to identify solutions to the problems ranging from housing, employment and financial worries to loneliness, bereavement and lifestyle issues.

After starting in 2016, it has now been named as a finalist in the MJ Local Government Achievement Awards in the Public Health category.

This is a significant honour and recognises the work of all those involved in the project.

Going Local is hosted by Adur and Worthing Councils in partnership with West Sussex County Council and Coastal West Sussex Clinical Commissioning Group. It began as a two-year pilot in 2016 and now has funding until September 2020.

Since it was launched, patients have been encouraged to join local social groups and clubs, and volunteer with local charities. They have also been referred to specialist organisations which can give them further advice.

Six GP surgeries across Adur and Worthing have taken part in the project and to date more than 1,000 people have been referred for this level of support.

Feedback on the project shows that the referrals have not only helped people improve their wellbeing, but it has freed up more time for doctors to concentrate on patients with purely medical issues. Appointments are also less likely to run overtime.

The project has also been highly commended for its use of digital technology. In July, Local Government Minister Rishi Sunak MP praised the project for its creative use of a specially designed digital app for both referring patients and helping them access local resources.

Local GP Dr Rani Dhillon, whose surgery is one of six to take part in the initial trial, said:

“In today’s stressful society, the Going Local initiative is absolutely essential.

“It provides an invaluable service to those patients that need that extra support to work through difficult life situations, leaving the clinicians to manage their medical care.”

Good luck to the whole team at the national award ceremony this week.

How to contact the communications team

You can reach our communication team by:

  • Calling – 01903 707447
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  • Writing to – Communications Team, NHS Coastal West Sussex CCG, 1 The Causeway, Goring-by-Sea, West Sussex, BN12 6BT