Health and social care programme is thriving in Milton Keynes

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A partnership health and social care programme that helps patients with lung conditions to manage their condition and live healthier, happier lives is thriving in Milton Keynes one year on from its launch.

NHS Milton Keynes Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), together with the British Lung Foundation, Milton Keynes Council, Sports England, Hertsemere Leisure Trust and Milton Keynes College, is celebrating this successful programme one year on by revisiting one of its many success stories – Bryn.

Bryn, who was part of the exercise and education course since the beginning, is seeing continued improvements to his health, fitness and quality of life. He said: “I really enjoy the sense of achievement. I set my own goals each week and I’m still seeing improvements in what I can achieve each week. Before I started this, I was someone who had never been to a gym and never thought it would – but since taking part in Keep Active, Keep Well, I go to the gym three times a week and it’s become part of my life.

“The course helps people like me to feel confident and comfortable with exercise and in a gym, knowing that I am managing my COPD and preventing exacerbations. There is a great social side to this course too and I consider the people I started the course with to be friends. We have a cup of tea and a chat after our gym sessions.”

As well as health and social benefits of the programme, Keep Active, Keep Well is also supporting and encouraging inter-generational-working with students at Milton Keynes College coming on board with programme.

Students from Milton Keynes College Sports Leadership Programme are now supporting the participants in their gym and theory sessions each week.

Adam Simmons, who is 17 and on the Sports Leadership Course, has been supporting the participants over the last twelve weeks. Adam said: “It’s been great working with participants on this course. It is rewarding for us to see how far they’ve come and how they improve week by week. This element of the course and working with older people has helped improve my confidence in talking to people and holding conversations with people of all ages.”

Course participants are also enjoying working with the college students and have commented on how friendly and helpful they have been throughout.

GPs in three participating Milton Keynes practices are referring patients onto the Keep Active, Keep Well scheme and a further six practices have now joined the pilot.