Social Prescribing Best Practice Product Development


NHS Long Term Plan committed to making personalised care business as usual for 2.5 million people over the next five years through a range of personalised care packages, including the rollout of Social Prescribing Link Workers (SPLWs) across GP surgeries in England.


The NHS England Personalised care group identified that the rollout ambitions were threatened with retention issues, partly due to a lack of understanding of the types of supervision for social prescribing link workers and how they work in practice. NHSE solicited NALW’s assistance to develop best practice products to address the gaps in knowledge.


NALW’s experience as a professional membership organisation and expertise in providing supervision enabled us to develop an inclusive product and communication strategy to address the problem.

We provided video examples of supervision in practice, including workplace supervision, clinical supervision, and group supervision from good practice organisations; we identified and invited them to participate. The six videos showed the primary care team member’s testimonials and narration of how it works. The importance of supervision in helping SPLWs develop and feel supported in their roles, ensuring they are safe to practice and deliver high-quality patient care benefits across the board. Once the videos were created, NALW worked with NHSE on a communication plan to promote the videos to relevant stakeholders, including social media and conferences. See the videos here.


The videos resulted in an increased understanding of the difference between types of supervision for Social Prescribing Link Workers and the value it brings. In addition, the communication plan expanded reach and access. As a result of the videos, some employers now provide the correct types of supervision to their social prescribing links workers, enabling SPLWs to conduct their work more effectively, fostering strong relationships between SPLWs and employers with increased job satisfaction and retention reported.

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