As part of its ongoing strategy to tackle health inequalities and reduce barriers to services which drive health and wellbeing, Sport For Confidence CIC has appointed two Occupational Therapists to work closely with local GPs, delivering primary care services to people across Brentwood. 
Funded through the Additional Roles and Reimbursement Scheme (NHS England) the appointments represent the first occupational therapists in Mid and South Essex to work within primary care, with one focus on improving access to primary care services for people with a learning disability. This work will include supporting GP Practices with increasing the uptake and improving the quality of Annual Health Checks and to attain a Learning Disability Friendly accreditation. The other focus is to support patients who are frail either in their own homes or within care homes, to be able to do the things they want or need to in order to increase their physical activity levels and reduce social exclusion. 
Aimee Nuttall, Primary Care Occupational Therapist at Sport for Confidence, explains: “Occupational Therapists are perfectly placed to play a valuable role in primary care. Often, an individual seeking medical services could benefit from a more holistic approach focused on empowering them to engage in activities that promote and encourage the development of life skills or occupations and create a sense of belonging. As Occupational Therapists, our unique selling point is the way we consider an explore the personal, environmental, and occupational demands of activities and by doing this, can enable and empower people to do the things they want or need to do.” This is exactly the support we offer. 
“As Occupational Therapists working in primary care, Kimberley and I work closely with GP practices to ensure everyone has access to the services and care they need, when they need it. We actively sign post people to other community services and work closely with health, social care and third sector providers. We can also refer patients to their local Sport for Confidence programme at the local leisure centre where they can get involved in person-centred physical activity sessions managed by Occupational Therapists and sports coaches. Sessions are suitable for various demographics and vary from strength and balance based to fully inclusive team sports and are focused on developing performance and social skills, forming friendships and having fun. 
Not just utilising the leisure centres, we provide a strong link between GPs and other community-based opportunities and assets that not only helps ensure people get the support they need to access facilities and services beyond a purely medical or clinical provision, but also helps to alleviate the pressure on GP appointments. 
Aimee and Kimberley currently work with 8 GP practices in Brentwood, as part of the wider Sport For Confidence team. If you would like to find out more about Sport for Confidence and our work in the Primary Care space please email 
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