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Loneliness: Older People

Question for Department of Health and Social Care

UIN 159047, tabled on 6 March 2023

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to reduce isolation of elderly people in local communities.

Answered on

14 March 2023

The Government is working with partners to support local areas to share and learn from best practice examples. This includes working with the Local Government Association to provide guidance on how local councils can tackle loneliness and providing a space for organisations to share resources on the Tackling Loneliness Hub.

The Levelling Up White Paper set out ambitions to improve wellbeing and pride in place across the country. We know that connected communities that provide people with opportunities to develop strong social relationships are an important part of delivering those ambitions.

In addition, social prescribing is a key component of the National Health Service Universal Personalised Care and is a way for general practitioners or local agencies to refer people to a link worker. Link workers connect people to community groups and statutory services for practical and emotional support. Social prescribing can work well for those who are socially isolated or whose wellbeing is being impacted by non-medical issues.