A project to support those living with long-term conditions and chronic illnesses has been expanded to Barra.
EU-funded project, mPower, aims to help people with conditions such as diabetes, COPD, dementia and Parkinsons, by connecting them with activities in their community as well as introducing them to health and wellbeing technology designed for home and mobile use.
The project has operated across Lewis and Harris since November 2017 but in recent months has now expanded with project representatives now working to cover Uist and Barra, meaning the mPower Western Isles team now has three Community Navigators.
Community Navigators work with those who have either self-referred to the project or been referred from their local health or social care team or from a voluntary sector organisation. Community Navigators work with individuals to develop a health and wellbeing plan which could include arranging access to various eHealth technologies. This might include video calling with health specialists to save them the trouble of physically going to multiple appointments or an appropriate remote health monitoring tool.
In Barra the Community Navigator will be based at Cobhair Bharraigh, an organisation providing support and care for the elderly within their own homes.
Martin Malcom, Head of Public Health Intelligence said: “We are delighted to be working with Cothrom and Cobhair Bharraigh. By working together we aim to best serve the local communities.”
The project has now helped over 1,000 people with its development of personalised wellbeing plans and digital health interventions across Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, empowering them to live safely and independently in their own homes.
Lorna Morrison, Community Navigator, said: “mPower has already made a great difference to the lives of many in Lewis and Harris and we aim to continue to support many more. Developing a Wellbeing Action plan with our service users is a great way to set goals in relation to health and wellbeing and allows our service users to take a step forward to begin achieving their goals with my support and encouragement.”
Sue Long, mPower’s Implementation Lead for the Western Isles, said: “I look forward to working with Flosh and Isabel and it is great news that mPower will now be extended throughout the Western Isles. This programme provides us with a real opportunity to empower those who are managing Long Term Conditions and may have become isolated to connect to what’s on offer in the local community.”
You can be referred to the project by your GP or other healthcare professional. You can ask them to be referred if they haven't already suggested it. Or you can submit a self-referral form. Forms can be picked up from local libraries, your GP Surgery or from a healthcare professional. Or you can contact the project team directly for a copy of the form, contact details are below.
The mPower project has a budget of €8.7million and is funded through the European Union’s INTERREG VA Programme, managed by the Special EU Programmes Body.
The project is match funded by the Northern Ireland Executive, the Irish Government and the Scottish Government.
For more information, visit https://mpowerhealth.eu.