Lancashire Times
A Voice of the Free Press
9:01 PM 8th December 2021

GPs Partner With Cruse To Highlight The Impact Bereavement Has On Mental And Physical Health

Photo by Milada Vigerova on Unsplash
Photo by Milada Vigerova on Unsplash
}During National Grief Awareness Week, Cruse Bereavement Support and the Royal College of GPs are announcing an exciting new partnership to strengthen bereavement support and understanding of grief for people across the UK.

In an important step for UK healthcare, the partnership aims to highlight just how impactful grief can be on a person’s physical and mental health.

New research released by Cruse, shows that over three-quarters of adults in Britain (78%) have never spoken to a GP about a bereavement. With this staggering figure in mind, Cruse and the RCGP are making clear to people who may need additional support after experiencing a bereavement, whether recent or in the past, that they can connect with their GP practice team. This will give GP teams the opportunity to identify people who may need additional support from bereavement services as well as offering information and advice on support available.
“Understanding grief and how it can affect your health is the first step towards getting the support you need

With support from a grant of more than £574,000 from The National Lottery Community Fund the largest funder of community activity in the UK, this campaign will supply GPs nationwide with a toolkit supporting them to provide consistent and compassionate support for grieving patients.

The toolkit also provides information and products for patients and healthcare staff – including an animation on the new partnership, a patient poster for all GP surgeries on bereavement and grief and a VBA (very brief advice) card for practice staff.

Sadly, nearly everyone will be affected by bereavement at some point in their life and it is vital that the right support is available and known for people who need it. This exciting initiative delivered by Cruse Bereavement Support in partnership with The RCGP, is a big step toward ensuring healthcare groups and bereavement support charities are working in partnership to provide the best bereavement support for grieving people.

Steven Wibberley, Chief Executive of Cruse Bereavement Support comments:
“Understanding grief and how it can affect your health is the first step towards getting the support you need – and GPs and practice teams can play a really important role in helping grieving people with this. That’s why we are so pleased to be collaborating with the RCGP in this important campaign to bridge the gap between healthcare and bereavement support. It’s our hope that this partnership will also ensure all grieving people, especially those who may feel alone and unsure of where to get help, are able to access the right support when they so desperately need it.”

Dr Catherine Millington-Sanders, Clinical Lead for Palliative and End of Life Care for the Royal College of General Practitioners comments:
“After a bereavement, it’s natural to want and ask for support. Many people find support from their friends, family or community networks but others may be really struggling with their grief and find more formal support helpful. GP practices are a valued and important source of information, support and advice in our communities. This work between the RCGP and Cruse aims to equip GP practice teams with the tools to help identify people with bereavement needs and accessible information to sign-post people to appropriate bereavement support, ensuring the bereaved person is at the centre of every step.”