This site is intended for health professionals only

GPs to prescribe self-help books instead of drugs

20 September 2007

Share this article

Family doctors in the North West will be able to prescribe self-help books instead of medications under a pioneering project.

The Books on Prescription (BoP) scheme aims to help patients cope with stress, anxiety, depression, anorexia, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), and abuse.

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) is supporting the drive as an alternative approach to handing out drugs.

GPs will be able to prescribe books from libraries as several local councils and health trusts are teaming up ahead of World Mental Health Day next month.

Jen Brown, health improvement specialist for mental health and wellbeing at Halton and St Helens PCT, which is one of the trusts taking part, said: “The Books on Prescription scheme provides people experiencing mild to moderate mental health issues with options on how to manage their situation.

“The books chosen are well-respected and offer a range of advice and techniques to assist in the healing process.”

The scheme has been launched in conjunction with St Helens Borough Council library service, and Northamptonshire, Cambridgeshire and some London boroughs are also taking part in the project.

Halton and St Helens PCT

Copyright © PA Business 2007

Take part in our short online survey and you could win one of four £25 M&S vouchers