Experiences of the medical encounter in social prescribing: Narratives of patients in Scotland

Anna-Kaisa Tuulikki Terje, Sarah-Anne Munoz

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


With a drive in the UK public health agenda to move towards community-based solutions and preventative approaches to ill health, social prescribing has been positioned as supporting individual and community resilience.

mPower is an INTERREG VA funded cross-border initiative, addressing demands on health and social care through seven partnerships in Scotland, Ireland and Northern Ireland. It provides its beneficiaries (aged 65 and over, with one or more long-term condition) with a social prescribing service, with co-produced personalised Wellbeing Plans designed with Community Navigators, as well as eHealth interventions enabling self-management.

This paper presents findings from the mPower evaluation, drawing on qualitative interviews with patients in Scotland. We examine the ‘medical encounters’ patients engage in with Community Navigators and how these are experienced by patients and differ from primary care encounters. Empowerment, encouraged by the collaborative creation of Wellbeing Plans, is suggested to lead to patients engaging in activities that promote social interaction and physical activity and, thus, act as preventative measures buffering the effects of aging and isolation. This enables older people to feel that they are taking control of their own health. This paper will show that while this is the desired outcome, the experience of encounters with Community Navigators may be the most valued part of the process by patients.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNorthern Network for Medical Humanities Research Congress
Publication statusPublished - 22 Jan 2020


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