Q: What is the Books on Prescription scheme?
A: It is a scheme to help you use reading to understand and manage your health and wellbeing. The scheme is endorsed by health professionals and supported by public libraries across Central Western NSW. This is an Australian pilot based on a very successful program run in the United Kingdom by the Reading Agency.

Q: How are the books chosen?
A: We’ve worked closely with health professionals who have recommended all of the books. They have also been tried and tested by people with experience of living with the conditions.

Q: Who recommends the books?
A: A GP or another health professional may give you information about Books on Prescription and recommend one or more of the titles. The book should be available to borrow from your local public library.

Q: Do I have to hand my recommendation form into the library?
A: No,  library staff are always ready to help you. You can read the book in the Library or, if you are a library member, you will be able to borrow it.

Q: How do I join my local public library?
A: It is easy to join your local public library. All you need is some form of identification that shows your residential address. Library membership is FREE and all loans and borrower details are treated as strictly confidential.

Q:  Can I borrow a book without a recommendation?
A: Yes. The books are all available for anyone to borrow from the library. You do not need to have a recommendation from a health professional.

Q:  How do I use the book once I have borrowed it?
A: You might choose to read the whole book or focus on the parts that seem most relevant to you.

Q:  What other support might I find at my local library?
A: Public libraries welcome people of all ages, interests and backgrounds and provide a wide range of programs to meet these needs. You might like to :

  • Join a reading group
  • Attend a computer class
  • Find additional health and well-being information
  • Join others involved in local, oral and family history
  • Become part of a knitting group
  • Bring your children (or grandchildren) to story time

… to name but a few!

Q: How do I find my local public library?
A: There are 14 Public Library services with 41 branches across the Central West area. Click here to find your nearest library.

Q:  Can I tell you what I think about the scheme?
A: We’d love to hear from you. If you have used any of the resources in the Books on Prescription scheme or have any views on it we would like to get your feedback. If you are interested in taking part in an interview or the survey please click here.

Q: What if the book doesn’t help?
A: If you find that the book you are reading is not helping, you should contact your GP or another health professional. You can also visit WayAhead and use the WayAhead Directory to locate services near you.

The following organisations also offer help and/or information:

  • Mental Health Line
    Call 1800 011 511
    24 hours a day, 7 days a week
  • Lifeline
    Call 13 11 14
    24 hours a day, 7 days a week
  • Beyond Blue
    Call 1300 22 4636
    24 hours a day, 7 days a week
  • Centre for Rural and Remote Mental Health
    Follow the links in the “Do you need help?” panel to get further information, links to mental health services and to self-help including online tools and apps.