With health and wellbeing being a huge focus for Wales of late, news of a new Swansea University academy has been welcomed.
Specialising in non-medical treatment, the set-up will work from the University’s college of human and health sciences. Offering osteopathy, post-bereavement care, midwifery support and brain injuries rehabilitation, the academy aims to relieve some of the pressure on the NHS.
The Health and Wellbeing Academy will be supported by the £600m Arch project; a scheme that brings Swansea Univeristy, Abertawe Bro Morgannwg (ABMU) and Hywel Dda health boards together. With a vision to improve the way in which healthcare is delivered in Wales, the project was actioned by Health Secretary Vaughan Gething on Monday.
Academy directory, Julia Pridmore, says that many of of the services, such as audiology and osteopathy, will be available for drop-in patients.
“If we make it easier for people to have themselves checked out at the first sign of trouble, or even just to reassure themselves that they are healthy, then hopefully we can reduce the amount of cases which become acute, requiring costly and difficult hospital treatment later on.”
In addition to the above services, the academy will also offer bereavement support to young people. Having joined forces with Curse charity to do so, the organisers of the Arch Project identified a huge lack of post-bereavement services in Wales.
Dr Zac Maunder, who manages the group, said:
“Research shows that early intervention can be enormously beneficial for bereaved young people, but all too often there are shortages of specially-trained counsellors and lengthy waiting lists.
“We now have the chance to provide a forum for young people to talk to us and each other.”
The health secretary said the academy will:
“enable staff to engage in cutting edge research that will drive innovation and excellence in Wales”.