Libraries reach out to people with long-term health conditions

People with long-term health conditions are being urged to seek help through the power of reading at Oxfordshire County Council’s Libraries.

A new ‘Reading Well’ scheme has been launched featuring expert-endorsed books on a range of conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and arthritis, as well as common complaints such as breathing difficulties and sleep problems.

People living with long-term conditions spend an average of just four hours a year with a health professional and 8,756 hours self-managing. There is a huge need for accessible, quality health information to help people understand and manage their symptoms.

Broad range of titles

The reading list comprises 28 books selected by health experts and people living with long term conditions themselves. The range includes health information, memoir and self-help titles all aimed at helping people take control of decisions affecting their health and gain fresh perspectives on their long-term condition. It is also aimed at helping carers gain new insight to supporting people with long-term problems.

Oxfordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Cultural Services Lorraine Lindsay-Gale said: “Many people struggle on a daily basis with long-term conditions, and there’s a real need for high quality help and advice outside traditional healthcare settings. This is an excellent scheme which ultimately has the potential to improve people’s lives and I’m proud that our libraries are helping to fulfil that role at the heart of the communities they serve.”

For more information: www.oxfordshire.gov.uk/readingwell