Adapting social prescribing to meet the needs of migrant populations: Challenges and solutions to service access and efficacy

Blerina Këllezi, Juliet Wakefield, Mhairi Bowe, Kay Bridger, Kirsty Teague

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Abstract

Experiences of international migrants in host countries are very diverse. However, many migrants face cumulative challenges to their health and wellbeing which can be best supported by health initiatives aiming to a) address needs derived from socio-political context where they live and b) increase meaningful connection with community. This paper discussed the value and challenges of using one such health initiative to support the needs of vulnerable migration populations: ‘Social Prescribing’. Data was collected from two roundtables with forty participants from organisations working with migrants in the UK and those with lived experience of migration and analysed using thematic analysis. Several challenges to accessing health support were identified including issues around acceptability, appropriateness, and quality of care. Participants emphasised the importance of holistic and culturally appropriate approaches which address health needs while recognising legal, economic and other challenges migrants face. To successfully implement initiatives such as Social Prescribing, there needs to be flexibility, shared understanding between service users and providers, community buy-in, attention to safeguarding and direct involvement of migrants in their development and implementation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-21
Number of pages21
JournalCommunity Psychology in Global Perspective
Volume7
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Keywords

  • Co-production of services
  • Health access
  • Migration
  • Participatory research
  • Social prescribing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Health(social science)

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