After a successful bid to the Digital Participation Charter Fund (supported by the Scottish Government and BT), the team at Ceartas have received funding to run a ‘Social Prescribing’ project in partnership with Regent Gardens Medical Centre.
This pilot project will support patients to develop their digital skills and access services online, in particular the online booking and repeat prescription facilities on the Regent Gardens website. With our support, those who register online can self-manage their own appointments, moving away from the traditional methods of phoning or popping into the Centre. This will save patients time and effort, and we will show them how to do that.
Roy and Ronnie will be alternating weeks at the Centre, taking residency every Thursday morning. As both are members of the OPAL team, the OPAL hat has been thrown onto the project as it ties in perfectly with the current service, enabling us to offer additional digital support on top of the information and signposting we already provide.
The project aims to cover six areas as specified in the Digital Skills Framework, championed by the Digital Participation Signatory, which includes; Foundation, Communication, Handling Information & Content, Transactions, Problem Solving, and Staying Safe & Legal.
But the support at Regent Gardens doesn’t end there as each topic will be discussed in greater depth at the Silver Surfers group, currently running at Lenzie Union Parish Church. The funding will cover the development of this group into a drop-in ‘Surgery’, for anyone looking to develop their digital skills in a friendly environment. Each week will focus on one of the headings in the Digital Skills Framework, and the relevant sub-categories as requested by those in attendance, such as best practice for passwords for ‘Staying Safe Online’. Members of the group will also be on hand to offer their guidance.
We will be directing people to here from Regent Gardens but the Silver Surfers is not exclusively for patients: it is for anyone wanting to learn or refresh their digital skills. In true OPAL fashion, we will be linking people to other digital support services in the area, and to any organisations or services that may be of help out with the digital world.
As a result of the Social Prescribing project, we hope that by equipping the people of East Dunbartonshire with the digital skills, we will see an uptake of patients accessing services online, accessing digital support should they need it, and an overall reduction in emergency admissions across the area in line with national outcome that ‘people are able to look after and improve their own health and well being and live in good health for longer.’
Please contact Roy Hunter or Ronnie Whiteside for more information about the Social Prescribing project. You can contact the OPAL team on 0141 438 2347 or firstname.lastname@example.org