In the latest issue of Nursing in Practice, we explore the role of nurses in implementing social prescribing, which has been billed as a ‘fundamental shift’ in primary care services.

The Government’s aim is to refer at least 900,000 people to social prescribing within five years and overall give 2.5 million people access to social prescribing. But the uptake it still low. Research has found that only 60% of CCGs use social prescribing. Could nurses make the difference?

We also look at the reality of nursing in rural Scotland, finding that it is challenging, isolated and ‘not for the faint-hearted’. We speak to members of a Rural Support Team who bring care to isolated communities where the nearest doctor might be two hours away.

In our community nurse section, Samantha Hayman seeks to dispel the myth that community nursing is not just for older nurses, even though she was advised not to take it up straight after university. And in the professional advice section, psychiatric liaison nurse, Fiona Brand gives advice on what nurses should do when they are struggling with personal mental health problems.

Finally, our clinical section covers the ten top tips for meeting the needs of people with learning disabilities; and our CPD module reviews rheumatoid arthritis.