Article - How social care staff in surgeries are easing the burden on GPs article on how tackling underlying social problems can benefit both doctors and patients.

The fallout from public sector spending cuts and subsequent pressures on daily life have added to the already substantial workload of GPs. Depression, anxiety and social isolation are often the result of benefit cuts, poor quality housing and debt, and the mental strain is driving more people to their doctors seeking help. This article reports on an arrangement set up by Stonham Homestay, funded by Norfolk council and supporting vulnerable people across the county. They proposed a more integrated approach to health and social care that could help both GPs and their patients. Commissioners agreed to fund a year-long pilot scheme that placed social care staff in two GP surgeries with one choosing to continue providing it after the pilot ended in June 2013 due to the positive impact doctors had experienced both on their workload and on patient wellbeing.

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