We work with customers across the NHS to transform vacant indoor and outdoor space into vibrant community hubs to be used by voluntary and community organisations to improve their local population's health and wellbeing.

What is social prescribing?

Social prescribing involves connecting people with mental or physical health challenges to community services like support groups, activity groups, employment support and adult learning. The aim is to help them tackle the root causes of their ill health and improve their overall wellbeing.

What are the benefits?

  • Social prescribing has a range of social, economic and physical benefits for patients. These include reducing social isolation, developing new skills, improving confidence and improving fitness.
  • Social prescribing can generate social value from vacant space across the estate.
  • Social prescribing can reduce health inequalities by giving people opportunities, skills and tools that help them with their specific circumstances.
  • By helping patients in non-medical ways, social prescribing takes pressure off primary care services by reducing the demand for GP appointments and prescriptions.

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How can NHS Property Services help?

We transform vacant indoor and outdoor spaces in health centres, GP practices and hospitals across England into community hubs.

We partner with ICBs, Trusts, GPs, the voluntary sector and local communities to identify and develop sites, ensuring that each space positively addresses the local health and social needs.

Spaces are used, free of charge, by voluntary and community organisations connected to social prescribing networks.

Since launching our programme in 2019, we are proud to have opened 75 social prescribing sites across England. Find out more about each of them on our interactive map.

Do you have a suitable space?

If you have vacant space that you think would be suitable for social prescribing or would just like to discuss potential social prescribing sites for development within your area, please speak to your local NHSPS contact or contact our Customer Service Centre.

Get in touch to discuss

Take a look at two of our social prescribing hubs

In this video, see how social prescribing spaces at Whitton Clinic in Ipswich and Victoria Central Health Centre in Wallasey are used to improve community wellbeing.

Report: Creating spaces for community and patient wellbeing

Our research report, written by The Health Creation Alliance for NHS Property Services, aims to get a better understanding of what matters most to different communities, both in terms of the kind of spaces that support wellbeing and the processes involved in making them available.

The report draws on the experiences of ten communities, including those with poorer health outcomes, in accessing and using community spaces, highlighting eight big themes that the NHS should focus on.

Read the report
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How to engage with social prescribing hubs in your area

We've developed a new social prescribing guide to help you learn more about our social prescribing hubs and the services they offer. You can find local services offered by the hubs, including baby banks, nutrition support and mental health support services, as well as information about how to refer patients.

Download brochure
Front cover of brochure saying How to engage with social prescribing hubs in your area