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Evaluation of the Rotherham mental health social prescribing service 2015/16/-2016/17

Author(s)

DAYSON Chris, BENNETT Ellen

Publisher(s):

Sheffield Hallam University. Centre for Regional Economic and Social Research

Publication year:

2017

Updated findings of an independent evaluation of the Rotherham Social Prescribing Mental Health Service, a service to help users of secondary mental health services build their own packages of support by accessing voluntary activity in the community. Voluntary activities covered four broad themes: befriending and peer support, education and training, community activity groups and therapeutic services. The service was delivered in partnership by Rotherham, Doncaster and South Humber NHS Foundation Trust (RDASH) and a group of local voluntary sector organisations led by Voluntary Action Rotherham. The evaluation looks at the impact of the service on the well-being of service users, the wider outcomes and social benefits, the impact of the service on discharge from secondary mental health services and explores the potential economic benefits of the service. It reports that over the two years of the evaluation, the service had engaged with more than 240 users of secondary mental health services in Rotherham. The service made a significant and positive impact on the well-being of mental health service users, with more than 90 per cent of service users making progress against at least one wellbeing outcome measure. Service users also experienced a range of wider benefits, including taking part in training, volunteering, taking up physical activity and sustained involvement in voluntary sector activity. Initial evidence about discharge from mental health services was also positive. The evaluation estimates that the well-being benefits experienced by service users equate to social value of up to £724,000: a social return on investment of £1.84 for every £1 invested in the service. (Edited publisher abstract)


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