Enhancing support for the health needs of vulnerable population groups

On this page, we list some of the projects and services which have been set up in the Healthy Hastings and Rother area to support the more vulnerable in our local population.

To read more about our other programme objectives, click on the links below:

Southdown Logo

Community Connector social prescribing service

A service provided by Southdown for people aged 16 years and over, providing social prescribing support to individuals experiencing issues affecting their mental health and well-being. During the period April 2017 to December 2018, 783 people received advice and support to plan their personal health goals. 524 (67%) referrals were made to specialist services such as housing benefit, debt advice, weight management and drug and alcohol support. See our directory of key services for the full service description and access information.

Click here to find out more about social prescribing.

Staying Well Space 

A service based in St Leonards, for adults experiencing mental health problems to manage issues, prevent crisis and reduce hospital attendance. The Staying Well Space opened in February 2018 and provides evening and weekend, recovery-focused (non-clinical) support.

During the first nine months of service delivery up to the end of 20187, 456 referrals were received of which 59 (13%) reported using the service as an alternative to A&E and 90 (20%) were supported with crisis interventions and recovery planning.

Further information about the service is available on Southdown's website.

HHR LD annual health checks

Primary Care Learning Disability Liaison Project

The project helps people with a learning disability in Hastings and Rother to access effective healthcare when they need it. Work to date has included:

  • Increasing the number of people with a learning disability who are registered and identifiable on a GP practice register. By the end of 2018, the registers of 21 practices had been audited and an additional 400+ patients with learning disabilities had been added to the registers, a 42% increase on the number prior to audits being undertaken

  • Identifying and addressing the barriers that prevent patients with learning disabilities having an Annual Health Check

Other work is detailed in an interim project report produced in May 2018.

HHR i-rock logo


An award-winning service for young people aged 14-25 years old, offering advice and support for emotional and mental wellbeing, employment, education and housing. Between April 2017 and December 2018, 1259 young people were supported and 83% were transitioned to other specialist organisations. Findings suggest that young people accessing i-Rock are often extremely distressed. However, many young people experience a significant decrease in their distress following initial contact. Further information is available in our directory of services and on Facebook.

In September 2018, i-Rock was recognised as national best practice for its work in promoting and protecting the emotional well-being and mental health of children, young people and families, when it was included in the Department of Education's "Social Mobility: Opportunity Areas - building the foundations of change" publication.

Rough sleepers and street community hub 

A weekly multi-agency hub in St Leonards to improve access to services and support for rough sleepers and the street community.

Between April 2017 and December 2018, 127 people were provided with housing and health and wellbeing information and referred to specialist services. Permanent housing solutions were found for 60 people. Findings demonstrate that co-ordinated intensive support enables better health and wellbeing and housing outcomes to be achieved and improvements in access to local GP practices, drug and alcohol treatment and mental health services.

HHR carers support

Support of patients with long-term conditions / dementia and their carers 

A programme aimed at improving health outcomes for patients and their carers and their access to local services. Between April 2017 and December 2018;

  • 1291 people were supported to access community services

  • 826 people were supported to access healthcare appointments

  • 378 people were supported to access Adult Social Care and community services

  • 440 people were supported with medication management

  • 427 carers were supported to prevent carer breakdown
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