A series of guides containing comprehensive information on local health and wellbeing services is being published by the NHS West Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Group in partnership with local authorities.
The market towns of Mildenhall, Brandon, Newmarket and Haverhill will each have their own specially commissioned directory of services, which will help inform local people of health services available in their town.
The guides will contain information on the opening hours and what is available at health centres, GP surgeries, dentists and pharmacies, along with details about other services such as councils, libraries, and charities. Included will be information about local health clinics such as sexual health and physiotherapy and advice on where to go for help with issues such as dementia or mental health.
Each guide will serve as a one-stop-shop of information for local health and care services.
Distribution of the free guides began in early December to GP surgeries, dental practices, pharmacies, council offices and newsagents in Mildenhall and Brandon.
Distribution to Haverhill and Newmarket should be complete before Christmas with a guide for Sudbury to follow in the New Year.
People are being encouraged to collect and keep a copy of the guide for their town at home. The guides can also be downloaded at www.westsuffolkccg.nhs.uk
Dr Ed Garratt, chief operating officer, NHS West Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Group said: “Last year we published a health guide for Haverhill, which was well received with lots of positive feedback.
“Most people had no idea how many services are on offer. With that in mind, we partnered with the councils to put together guides for Brandon, Newmarket and Mildenhall.
“The guides will be distributed in each town to libraries, GP practices, pharmacies, opticians, health centres, leisure centres, police stations and some newsagents.
“This is an ambitious project, and we found we were only able to come within budget on it if we made sacrifices. We will no longer be distributing one copy of the Haverhill guide to every home, after taking advice from ONE Haverhill.
“They will be available widely, or people can contact us to request copies.
“We are extremely grateful for the full support of our partners including Forest Health District Council, St Edmundsbury Borough Council and ONE Haverhill, which have all played an important role in the guides’ creation and publication.”
Cllr Sara Mildmay-White, St Edmundsbury Cabinet Member for Health and Communities said: “The health of our communities and access to services are at the top of our agenda.
“The health guide for Haverhill has already proven extremely useful to residents, directing them to the services available on their doorstep and I am glad to see that not only has it been updated, but that it is also being rolled out to other towns in west Suffolk.”