Health and wellbeing

Books on prescription

Next time you see your GP or another health professional, why not ask them to prescribe one of our high quality self-help books to help you deal with a range of commonly experienced issues, such as depression, anxiety and stress.

How the scheme works

Simply take your prescription to your local library, where you’ll find our Books on Prescription collection. If you can’t find what you want, please ask a member of staff for help.  The books can also be borrowed without a prescription.

We currently have BOP books available at Acomb, Dunnington, Huntington, Tang Hall, Strensall, Sycamore House and York Explore.

If you’re not already a member of the library, you can join straight away for free.

For more information, download the information leaflet or booklist.

You can browse the Books on Prescription Main Collection, the Books on Prescription Dementia Collection, or the Books on Prescription – Reading Well for Young People, collections on our catalogue.

Supported by

The Books on Prescription scheme is supported by the Royal College of General Practitioners and:

  • Royal College of Nursing
  • Royal College of Psychiatrists
  • British Psychological Society
  • Department of Health’s Improving Access to Psychological Therapies Programme
  • British Association of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies
  • British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapies
  • Mind


Reading in a Group is a book club for people living with dementia and their carers; we meet at York Explore and new members are welcome. For more information see the Reading Groups page.

Memory Bank is an award-winning series of DVDs developed by the Yorkshire Film Archive, available free to borrow. They use archive films to bring past events and experiences to life, prompting stories and memories to share and enjoy.  They’re great for reminiscence, memory and life story work, for older people and those with dementia.  Browse the Memory Bank collection on our catalogue and place free reservations now.

The 25 books on the Books on Prescription – Dementia Collection list have been recommended by health experts as well as people with lived experience. The list includes a range of books offering information and advice about dementia and normal aging, support with living well after diagnosis, practical advice for carers, personal accounts, and suggestions for shared therapeutic activities. Browse the Books on Prescription Dementia Collection on our catalogue website and place free reservations to collect from any library.

Home Library Service

If you can’t get to a library, the Home Library Service can help by bringing books, including large-print books, and audio-books to you in your home.

Recommended Health Websites

We pay for access to the Concise Medical Dictionary and the Dictionary of Public Health so you don’t have to!  For quick and reliable definitions and explanations. If you’re not in the library you will need your library card and PIN number to access.

The Food Standards Agency is an independent government department responsible for food safety and hygiene across the UK.

The General Medical Council registers doctors to practice medicine in the UK. This site includes the medical register which lists all doctors licensed to work in the UK.

Mednar is a free, publicly available deep web search engine that uses advanced federated search technology to return high quality medical information.

York Teaching Hospital Trust provide acute services for people living in and around York and also a range of specialist services over a wider catchment area.  Their website contains information and news about the services that are available from the trust.

Yor Sexual Health is a website specifically for people living in North Yorkshire and York and contains everything you need to know about accessing sexual health services in the area.