“Given the growing body of evidence that indicates nature time can improve all kinds of different physical and mental health conditions, we’re hoping that our PaRx program not only improves patient health, but reduces costs to the healthcare system, and helps to grow the number of people who are more engaged environmental advocates.”- Prama Rahman, Coordinator for the BC Parks Foundation’s Healthy By Nature Program.
If you live in Canada, you’re going to want to check this out. NPR reports that PaRx has partnered with Parks Canada to prescribe patients a free national park pass, allowing clients to visit any national park in the country. Initially, only one hundred passes will be offered as part of the program, but this number will likely increase as demand grows. PaRx was created by the British Columbia Parks Foundation in 2019 after a study published that year found that those who spend two hours outside “reported positive effects on their general health and well-being when compared to those who didn’t get outside at all.” With some health care providers in the United States also providing similar kinds of programs, this will likely become more mainstream in the years to come.