Enhancing Community Health and Wellbeing: Doncaster North PCN’s Collaboration with Citizens Advice

Posted by: bethanyhollis - Posted on:

Citizen Advice

Doncaster North Primary Care Network (PCN) has partnered with Citizen Advice Doncaster Borough to launch a pilot project to provide local and accessible solutions to challenges faced by local communities through a holistic offer of free impartial advice and support to NHS staff and patients within a trusted PCN setting. 

Empowering Health through Collaborative Initiatives 

The pilot established a weekly advice clinic within the White Wings Practice in Askern, where people can meet with one of the Citizens Advice trained advisers by self-referral via the reception or with a pre-made appointment. 

During this pilot, Citizen Advice offered free and confidential guidance on a range of problems affecting people’s health and overall well-being, including health, employment, debt, cost of living, benefits, immigration, housing and more. 

An Integrated Approach to Community Health 

The pilot allowed improved access to support in a primary care location where people directly discuss health concerns and issues impacting them in a familiar environment. Citizens Advice’s advisors were placed within primary care settings to provide free, confidential, impartial, early intervention advice and support to patients. This level of availability within a trusted environment has proven crucial and GPs can directly refer patients to Citizen Advice services, ensuring timely assistance and support. 

Promoting Financial Resilience and Well-being 

The success of this pilot project showcases the critical role that advice plays in addressing inequalities. The collaboration between Doncaster North Primary Care Network (PCN) and Citizen Advice Doncaster Borough has created a streamlined referral system, leading to quicker access to support. Working together has demonstrated how integrated care initiatives can significantly impact the well-being of our communities. Improved access to welfare rights advice has allowed people to make informed choices and receive benefits they would have otherwise not claimed, leading to a significant improvement of their overall quality of life.

Paving the Way Forward 

Having access to quality care and support gives people the skills and knowledge needed to tackle the broader issues that exacerbate health inequalities. This partnership highlighted how a comprehensive and impactful support system ensures that nobody falls through the cracks and can make a real difference in the lives of individuals in Doncaster, forging a path towards a healthier, more resilient community.