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Health Coach Pilot launched in Carmarthenshire

20 January 2022

Hywel Dda University Health Board (UHB) has launched a new Health Coach pilot to support healthy lifestyle change within our communities. With guidance from the Dyfed Area Planning Board Commissioning Strategy, this screening and brief intervention pilot using Health Coaches was created.

The pilot focuses on intervening to support patients who are seeking help with alcohol, smoking, vaping, healthy eating, and physical activity.  GPs and practice nurses will screen patients and if they are keen to see a Health Coach, contact will be made.

The Health Coach will use motivational interview and brief intervention techniques to support the patient to make small changes to support people to self-care. Each patient who attends with a Health Coach will receive support to develop a lifestyle improvement plan and will engage with the Coach over several weeks. The Health Coach can also refer patients to more specialised services such as Dyfed Drug and Alcohol Service (DDAS) if appropriate.

Craig Jones, Prevention and Population Health Improvement Manager, said: “We hope that this project will give people the confidence to gain some support for the small changes they wish to make to their lifestyle so they can live longer and healthier lives.

“The Health Coaches will provide the support the patient needs about the issues that are important to the patient. It’s about teamwork between the person, the GP and the Health Coach to find the best outcomes.”

Nine GP surgeries across Carmarthenshire are currently implementing or trialling this pilot, with the next phase intending to roll out to Pembrokeshire and Ceredigion.