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November 2019

e-learning aims to help GPNs promote self-care messages

The Self Care Forum marked Self Care Week 2019 this month – theme ‘Think self care for life’ – with the launch of an easy to use e-learning package aimed at helping general practice nurses, GPs and other health professionals incorporate self care messages in their consultations.      

Successful self care aware consultations, developed in partnership with health professionals and patient representatives, was commissioned by NHS England to support its guidance on non-prescribing in primary care of items which can be obtained over the counter.

The e-learning package aims to equip healthcare professionals with the knowledge and skills to conduct ‘self care aware’ consultations to support people to have the confidence to better look after their own health when it comes to self-treatable conditions.

Self Care Forum president, Dr Peter Smith, who has been conducting self care aware coconsultations for many years, said: ‘As a GP, I discovered over 30 years ago that people want to look after themselves as well as they can and want to be reassured they are getting it right. ‘By including self care messages in as many contacts as possible we can help them achieve this. And, whilst there’s lots of pressure on all our time, this online course can help HCPs incorporate self care within the confines of a 10 minute consultation.' 

‘This course is also perfect for nurses,’ says the RCN’s Helen Donovan, the Self Care Forum’s chair. ‘Practice nurses have always been particularly strong champions of self care and looking at the holistic needs of the people they see. This resource is ideal for experienced nurses and newly qualified, to support them to help patients with self care and make every contact count – it’s about helping people to help themselves which is the best philosophy for any service user interaction.'

GP and Chief Executive of the Self Care Forum Dr Knut Schroeder said: ‘This new e-learning resource will be a welcome tool for general practice teams, enabling them to provide information and support relating to self care more effectively. And this will be a good thing because better self care not only empowers patients to be more in control of their health but also benefits the NHS by helping people choose services wisely.’  

Successful self care aware consultations, a course in four short modules, can be accessed free of charge on the E-Learning for Life platform.