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Reading Well - Books on Prescription

Reading Well Books on Prescription helps people to understand and manage their health and wellbeing using self-help reading. The scheme is endorsed by health professionals and supported by public libraries.

There are three lists for adults:

  • Reading Well for long term conditions provides information and support for people living with a long term condition such as arthritis, bowel conditions, diabetes, heart disease and stroke.
  • Reading Well for dementia recommends books for people with dementia, advice and information for carers about memory loss conditions and living well with dementia.
  • Reading Well for common mental health conditions provides information and self-help techniques for managing a variety of common mental health conditions, including depression and anxiety.

The books have been chosen by doctors and health practitioners and have been selected using guidelines and quality standards from NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence).
Here are some comments from people who have found the books useful:

  • "An excellent self-help guide... I have been diagnosed with depression and this book was recommended by my GP"
  • "After reading this book, I felt a new sense of well-being"
  • "This book has really helped me to learn how to change those thoughts and become a more positive person"
  • GPs and health practitioners issue a ‘prescription’ for the recommended book
  • This can be taken to your local library
  • Staff can request a copy of the book for you free of charge if it isn’t available
  • The book can be borrowed for 3 weeks; an extension may be possible if no-one is waiting for it

You can view the three Reading Well Books on Prescription lists on our online library catalogue.

  • Ensure the doctor or other health professional has included your name and address on the prescription and this can be used as proof of ID
  • It is free to join the library and borrow books, you may also like to look at other related information books or use the computers free of charge

Think of the library as you would your local pharmacist:

  • Someone who can deliver what is prescribed
  • With professional expertise
  • And ethical practice
  • Staff will not divulge any information about who is borrowing a book or what it is about

Reading Well can help you cope with:

  • The pressures of life
  • Feel better about yourself
  • Boost your confidence using books

The Reading Well books have been chosen by young people and health experts to help you with difficult feelings and experiences that can affect your wellbeing.

The books have information and advice as well as personal stories about dealing with feelings such as:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Stress
  • Experiences such as bullying

The books are free to reserve and to borrow from Wiltshire libraries.


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Last updated: 2 August 2017 | Last reviewed: 2 August 2017