Reading Well for Long Term Conditions

Issued: Monday, July 3

Lincs Inspire Libraries launches new scheme to support people living with long term conditions 

AT a time when 26 million people in England are living with at least one long term condition(1), Lincs Inspire Libraries is today launching a national scheme to support them with expert endorsed books available to borrow for free.

Reading Well for long term conditions is part of the successful Reading Well Books on Prescription programme delivered through English public libraries. It provides people living with long term conditions and their carers with high-quality book based information, support and advice on a range of conditions.  On average people living with long term conditions spend just four hours a year with a health professional and 8,756 hours self-managing(2). There is therefore an enormous need for accessible, quality assured health information to help people understand and manage their symptoms.

Developed with health experts and people living with long term conditions and their carers, the new Reading Well scheme encourages people to take an active role in making decisions about their health and understanding and managing a range of long term their conditions. The books are free to borrow from all Lincs Inspire libraries as well as in other participating libraries across England.

Reading Well for long term conditions has a recommended reading list of 28 books that were selected by health experts and people living with long term conditions. The list includes health information, memoir and self-management titles and covers conditions such as diabetes, stroke and heart disease, as well as common symptoms such as fatigue, pain, wellbeing and sleep problems.

To celebrate the launch of the scheme and Health Information Week Jo Thomas and Chris Lawton of the Northern Lincolnshire & Goole NHS Foundation Trust will be visiting Cleethorpes Library on Tuesday 4th July between 10.30am and 2.30pm and Waltham Library on Thursday 6th July between 10.30am and 2.30pm where they will be signposting people to health information websites, particularly NHS Evidence which is provided by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence.

Jennie Cartwright, Development Officer for Lincs Inspire Libraries, said: “Lincs Inspire Libraries are pleased to be able to offer this new collection of books from the national Reading Well initiative in our Libraries and to be working with Jo Thomas of NLAG as we share the objectives of supporting the health and wellbeing agenda in the community and are always striving to develop new working partnerships that will benefit our users.”

(1) Long Term Conditions Metrics, NHS England, 2016
(2) Long Term Conditions Metrics, NHS England, 2016