GPs could prescribe free bikes to those who can’t afford them under a new scheme improving ‘health and mobility’


GPs are prescribing pedaling instead of pills to some patients – with free cycles offered to improve their health. The Bikes on Prescription program involves nearly 80 Midland GPs who can prescribe cycling as a treatment for certain people with physical and mental health conditions.

And to make exercising even easier, free bikes are offered by Birmingham City Council as part of its ‘Big Birmingham Bikes’ initiative.

Raleigh cycles are distributed to people on a waiting list, with a GP referral among the means to access the scheme.

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Bikes on Prescription is a three-year funded project allowing 79 local GPs to choose who will benefit.

Last week, 20 residents living near Small Heath wellness center were selected to collect bikes, with a total of 500 to be donated.

Nazrowee Younis (18) (sc) and his bike.

The council’s travel demand manager, Peter Edwards, said: “It’s great that Birmingham City Council is giving away another batch of Big Birmingham Bikes.

“The council is building on its previous success when over £5,000 was donated to increase the mobility and health of people in Birmingham in an environmentally friendly way.”

Sue Mellor, acting cycling manager at the Active Wellness Society.

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Those who struggle with cycling or want to build confidence can sign up for training from the Active Wellbeing Society, which is also involved in the program.

Its interim cycling manager, Sue Mellor, said: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with Birmingham City Council to provide more bikes to those who would benefit most, to improve their mental and physical well-being; providing more cycling opportunities for those who are typically excluded, enabling the citizens of Birmingham to live more empowered active connected lives.”

The program is funded by £250,000 from the Department for Transport’s Active Travel Fund through Transport for West Midlands.

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