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Pilot Scheme Links Citizens Advice Bureau And GP Surgeries

Published on: 27 Jan, 2015
Updated on: 1 Feb, 2015

A new pilot initiative will see local advice providers offering their services within number of doctors’ surgeries in Guildford.

Citizen’s Advice Bureau (CAB) advisers will be a key part of the service with other advice agencies, such as Age UK Surrey, also taking part at some locations.

Sally Taylorson who is leading the pilot scheme for Guildford Advice Services.

Sally Taylorson who is leading the pilot scheme for Guildford Advice Services.

The service is aiming to make it easier for people to get access to advice. By placing advisers in GP surgeries, it can help doctors to help patients with social and financial problems that could impair their health if they are not addressed. It is an early intervention, designed to prevent people from becoming ill due to social problems.

The Dapdune House Surgery in Wharf Road will take part in the initial phase of the pilot along with two of the Guildown Group Practice’s surgeries – The Oaks in Park Barn and Stoughton Road.

The pilot is being co-ordinated by Guildford Advice Services (GAS), a Big Lottery Funded project that is aiming to improve access to advice for people in the borough of Guildford.

Sally Taylorson is leading the pilot for GAS. She will be liaising with the advisers and surgeries throughout the project and visiting them regularly, assisting the staff and the people who use the service.

She said: “There has been a good deal of enthusiasm about this initiative – from the GPs practices, advice agencies and those in the local community we have spoken with.”

“We want to try to prevent people who are unwell from going into that downward spiral of ill health should they be experiencing other problems in their lives.”

CAB 1The CAB’s advice and up-to-date information is wide ranging ­­– from housing issues and benefits to debt problems, education and welfare. Advice is always free, independent, confidential and impartial. Age UK Surrey also deal with a wide range of subjects, supporting people 50-plus and their friends and family.

Sally said that there are similar projects running in GPs surgeries in other areas of the UK, which have proven to be extremely beneficial. One in Derbyshire, running for many years, sees advisers in 94 of the county’s 102 GP surgeries.

She added: “After the six-month pilot here in Guildford, the benefits that the project has delivered will be assessed and we hope that it will continue and grow.”

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Responses to Pilot Scheme Links Citizens Advice Bureau And GP Surgeries

  1. Kelly-Marie Blundell Reply

    January 28, 2015 at 8:35 pm

    This is a genuinely great initiative.
    I have publically called for more funding for advice services, and the idea of linking with GP Services will benefit thousands of people with ill health.

  2. Ngaire Wadman Reply

    January 29, 2015 at 11:06 am

    What a splendid idea, providing advice on personal problems in an accessible venue.

    The CAB is a great organisation, and taking it out to places where people can easily access its resources is a logical step. Friendly, face-to-face, informed volunteers can be so reassuring in difficult situations.

    We should have more joined-up thinking like this.

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