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Health experts back idea for Grammar site as community hub

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TURNING the Grammar School into a community hub for complementary health services has won the backing of health experts, who say it will lead to more social prescribing such as yoga classes and the arts, instead of drugs.

The Grammar School at Footes Lane. (Picture by Brian Green, 25251725)

Part of the education transformation plan is the idea to turn the Les Varendes site into a centre for a community gym, healthy lifestyle and weight management courses, art therapy, adult education, housing advice and other services.

The Health & Social Care committee is supporting the concept. Vice-president Rhian Tooley said the community hub would also be a space for voluntary, charity and private sector organisations.

‘The community hub will bring together primary health services as well as community-centred care. Social prescribing will be a key feature that will be used to connect people with local community resources.

‘This will build on social prescribing activities that are being carried out by voluntary and charitable groups in the Bailiwick today.’

Deputy Tooley is also in favour of the co-location of education and health care services at the two proposed 11-18 colleges.

In its overhaul of States schools, Education, Sport & Culture wants to create space at each college for clinical rooms that would be used by school nurses, school dentists, physiotherapists, social workers, educational psychologists and other health and care professionals.

Each of the areas would have a separate entrance and a further secure room.

It is anticipated that demand for these rooms would be high and even when they are not in the proposed use, they could benefit school staff because they would provide an environment to meet with students of particular needs, or with parents and carers.

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It is noted that this would mean less time lost to education in attending appointments during school time and there would be opportunities for different agencies to work together more.

Civil servants from both ESC and HSC worked jointly to come up with the blueprint and Deputy Tooley said that it was a step forward in improving health and wellbeing.

‘The Partnership of Purpose sets out a commitment to transform health and care services by offering joined-up services, where people are valued, listened to, informed, respected and involved throughout their health and care journey.

‘The States’ decision to transform education in the Bailiwick has provided the perfect opportunity for us to demonstrate our commitment to transform our services and enables Education, Health & Social Care and the voluntary and charitable sector to work together to plan for the co-location of services for the benefit of those we serve.’

Helen Bowditch

By Helen Bowditch
News reporter

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