Social prescribing at Ysbyty'r Seren

Ysbyty’r Seren is Cwm Taf Morgannwg’s temporary hospital, which was established in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The hospital aims to gives patients a calm and restful place to rehabilitate while they recover from COVID-19. 

A focus for us was supporting the hospital’s Medical Lead, Dr Liza Thomas-Emrus, with embedding social prescribing at the hospital.

Social prescribing aims to support individuals to take greater control of their own health and well-being though linking people to support in their community.

Social prescribing is well established within community healthcare practices, such as GP surgeries, but has limited reach in hospital settings. This was an opportunity for us to be innovative and test social prescribing in a new environment.

Setting up a wellbeing team

At Ysbyty’r Seren, many organisations from Age Connects Morgannwg to Mental Health Matters are involved in supporting the wellbeing of patients, offering a range of services and support that can be ‘socially prescribed’.

To assist this work, our Local Authority Engagement Officer, Jo, was tasked with leading on the creation and co-ordination of a brand new wellbeing team, called Tîm Gwen.

Alongside Cwm Taf Morgannwg health board’s Arts and Health Coordinator, Jo helped to expand the team to 20 wellbeing practitioners, all providing a hands on service to support the mental, physical, emotional and spiritual needs of the patients.

Services offered by Tîm Gwen

Tîm Gwen includes a range of different practitioners working together in partnership, including:

  • Mental Health Matters
  • Age Connects Morgannwg
  • Creative Artists
  • Creative Writing Facilitator
  • Musician
  • Acupressure/Touch Practitioner
  • Movement Psychotherapist
  • Chaplaincy

Tîm Gwen has supported over 200 patients from the hospital opening on 4th October 2020

Feedback from Mrs Davies*, who has been supported through Tîm Gwen:

"I can’t explain how much better I felt after having my nails painted and my hair cut. I’ve never been pampered like that before." {*name has been changed)

Dr Liza Thomas-Emrus, Temporary Hospital Medical Lead at Ysbyty’r Seren (now GP Partner at Forest View Medical Centre) said:

“Implementing social prescribing at Ysbyty’r Seren has been instrumental in the success of the care model delivered. It has resulted in improved staff morale with pride in the patient-centred care given and also improved patient outcomes.”