Nailsea digital health hub success scaled up

A digital health hub piloted in Nailsea has proved to be such a success that the NHS is scaling it up across England, as demand increases from councils in North West London, the Wirral, Blackburn, Middlesbrough and Stafford.

65 High Street, known as ‘Nailsea Place’, is a digital health and well-being learning centre in north Somerset which has become a trusted place on the high street since its opening in 2018, where staff and volunteers can help people to improve their digital skills and confidence, so they can engage with online services.

The initiative, a partnership between local NHS services, Nailsea Town Council and Healthwatch, has so far engaged 1,340 people including those with dementia, diabetes, autism and those acting as young carers.

Now, organisations in five new areas will now use their own digital health hubs to learn what works in their area. This second wave of hubs will be in Blackburn with Darwen Library, Staffordshire Refugee Centre (ASHA), a community centre in Saltburn and the Grenfell victims support centre in NW London. Each will be designing a welcoming environment and giving people the opportunity to learn more about their health, and whatever else they need at that moment in time.

Ian Morrell, Development Manager at Nailsea Town Council said, “The digital revolution has created disadvantages which did not previously exist, and many people feel excluded and left behind. At No. 65, we have aimed to build trust with the local community, and provide one-to-one support, introducing people to technology in an accessible way so they can see the benefits digital can provide. When people come to us for help with technology, the first thing we do is find out what they need - so we are providing a service that is led by users, and which ensures they get what they want from the support we can offer.”

The project is part of the NHS’s Widening Digital Participation Programme, which aims to make digital health services and information accessible to everyone – particularly the most excluded people in society.

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