Self Care Week 2015: Self Care for Life

Dr Selwyn Hodge, Co-chair of the Self Care Forum blogs for us this week on the importance of self-care and invites you to be part of their upcoming Self-Care Week 2015.

The Self Care Forum is delighted to be a new partner of the Coalition for Collaborative Care. Our remit is broader than long term conditions since it runs along the self-care continuum and includes prevention, lifestyle, self-care for minor ailments and self-management of long term conditions. However, our ethos is very much in line with the C4CC’s in that we believe people should be supported and given the tools to enable them to look after their own health better and so increase their levels of health literacy.

This is summed up in our mission statement, which is to further the reach of self-care and embed it into everyday life, making it a lifelong habit and culture.

A major activity of the Self Care Forum is to organise the national awareness campaign, Self Care Week (16 – 22 November 2015). The aim is for people-facing organisations, such as the voluntary and community sector, CCGs, pharmacies, surgeries and local authorities to use the campaign as a focus to increase people’s ability to self-care.

Self Care for Life is the theme for 2015, which is designed to be broad enough to encompass a range of self-care messages to fit organisations’ chosen campaign objectives. Whether the focus is on self-management for long-term conditions, self-care for minor ailments, signposting to health services or generally improving people’s health and wellbeing and increasing their levels of health literacy, Self Care for Life is a meaningful banner for all your self-care messages.

The Self Care Forum is heartened by the value organisations are now placing on self-care and government too acknowledges the need to increase levels of self-care. Launching Self Care Week last year, the then Health Minister Earl Howe said: “Going further on self-care is absolutely vital for the sustainability of the NHS and better for patients… it leads to improved patient outcomes, fewer unnecessary consultations and better use of resources.” He spoke about the two-way partnership between patients and healthcare professionals to provide patients with the information, tools, support and care to help them stay well.

The Self Care Forum hopes organisations will participate in Self Care Week 2015 to help people Self Care for Life and for more information about Self Care Week, go to www.selfcareforum.org or email libby.whittaker@selfcareforum.org and sign up for Self Care Forum updates.

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