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Position Statement 5

Evidence-based solutions are needed to reduce social isolation and loneliness and to increase social connection

 

Global research on the consequences of poor social connection, including loneliness and social isolation, is quite robust. However, the evidence is still emerging on how to effectively tackle these issues. While loneliness and social isolation may be challenging to identify, address and resolve, the science shows that there are ways that each can be reduced. In support of addressing health disparities across populations, there may also be various reasons why someone experiences loneliness / social isolation, and therefore any solutions deployed must be responsive to the specific needs of the individual within the context of the communities in which they reside.

 

Recommendations

5.1 Governments and funding agencies need to increase funding for research designed to improve  

      interventions that prevent or reduce social isolation and loneliness, or increase social connection.

      The evaluation of existing interventions is critical to our understanding of what types of interventions work,         for whom, and when.

5.2 Guidelines need to be developed for health and social care providers to assist them to implement    

      evidence-informed approaches to identify and support people experiencing social isolation and loneliness         across all populations and identities.

5.3 Organisations which provide services and support need to routinely assess, evaluate, and report on         

      the effectiveness of their services to reduce loneliness and social isolation or to increase social                         connection.

5.4 Governments and organisations should establish standardization of measurement, using validated           

      tools.

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