This briefing has been produced for Assembly Members in preparation for the Statement by the Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services on The Loneliness and Social Isolation Strategy.
- Our members, the seven Local Health Boards, three NHS Trusts and Health Education and Improvement Wales, welcome the introduction of the Loneliness and Isolation Strategy having actively engaged in the Welsh Government’s (WGs) Loneliness and Social Isolation consultation in January 2019.
- Around 29 per cent of the population report feeling socially lonely and the effects of social and emotional loneliness on physical and mental health and wellbeing are extensive. Evidence suggests that loneliness is associated with sleep problems, abnormal stress response, high blood pressure, poor quality of life, frailty, increased risk of heart attack and stroke, depression and increased risk of dementia.
- There are many factors and triggers that contribute towards someone feeling lonely or isolated, such as bereavement, loss of employment, co-morbidities and closure of local services and amenities.