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antonia April 24, 2024

Revolutionising menopause support in Rushcliffe

In Rushcliffe, they’re revolutionising the approach to menopause healthcare! The innovative initiative, involving GP-led group menopause consultations, with social prescribing support, has just concluded its pilot run with extraordinary success. 

The groups  were set up as a way to allow women more time to discuss these issues with GPs, and allow for the needs of people in the same situation to be met together.

The response has been overwhelmingly positive. Women participating in the programme report smoother access to GP advice, a profound sense of being heard, and a strong support network, alleviating the isolation often felt during menopause. Clinicians and patients alike applaud the efficiency and effectiveness of this approach.

South Notts News talked with Jackie, 59 who along with being a social prescriber, is also a participant in the group, and she shared more about why it is so fantastic, and what is involved.

Jackie joined the group not long after it started in Autumn last year, and hasn’t looked back.

“I had a hysterectomy 15 years ago, and I was put on HRT. I’d had night sweats and was struggling on three hours sleep, memory issues etc.  I just thought it was just a part of life but this group made me realise these were menopause symptoms, I’d never put the two together.”

“The group is absolutely fantastic, it makes you realise you are not on your own, what you are going through is perfectly normal and I have learnt so much from other people.

“GPs are there to advise on things we can do to help our symptoms, such as with diet and exercise, for example, where you can get natural oestrogen in your diet and what foods you can eat to get that, if that is the route you wanted to go down.

“If you did want to have medication the GPs go through choices, such as patches, gels, tablets and there are able to prescribe there and then, which is brilliant.”

The GPs are supported by social prescribers. They set up and facilitate the groups. They are also about to talk to participants about how they might be able to support with things such as anxiety, or if people are feeling isolated, and what help is available.

Jackie continued “Every woman I’ve spoken to at the group has been really positive and said this needs to be offered to all women. I would definitely recommend to anyone struggling, get yourself on to a group session. You find out so much and it’s a great support to meet others going through the same.”

Women can be referred to the group by staff at their GP practice, including the receptionists, GPs and nurses, so if this is something you think would benefit you then please speak to them about it.