A SHELDON GP practice is tackling loneliness among elderly Silhillians this Christmas.
The Coventry Road Medical Practice has joined forces with national charity Contact the Elderly to launch a monthly tea party for its older patients.
Providing the patients with an opportunity to meet with similar people, the tea parties aim to reduce the number of appointments made by isolated older people and will help GPs offer support to patients who may not need medical attention but are experiencing loneliness.
Dr Sue Harrower, GP at Coventry Road and Governing Body member at Solihull CCG, said: “We welcome Contact the Elderly’s initiative to enhance the wellbeing of our more vulnerable patients.
“The monthly tea parties are important and can make a big difference to those who really need it.
“The first one we hosted was a real success, people really enjoyed it. We’re proud to offer this to our patients.”
Contact the Elderly now hopes other GP practices in the borough will follow suit and host their own tea parties – offering OAPs the vital face-to-face contact many of them miss out on.
Pamela Walker, the charity’s Birmingham development officer, said “I’m delighted to see how successful the first tea party was at the practice in Sheldon.
“Being able to work with the surgery to provide this solution for its older patients means that we’re relieving pressure on the GP practice, and the NHS with regards to appointment waiting times.
“It would be great to see other GP practices launch their own groups, all we ask is for everyone to give a couple of hours a month to spend time with the older generation.
“The time commitment is so small but the tea parties make a profound difference to the lives of our older guests.”
The next tea party at the Coventry Road Medical Practice will take place on Thursday, November 19 from 1.30 til 3.30pm and is only open to patients at the practice.