News

Mental health support for health and social care staff

Published: 28 Jan 2021 12:17

Frontline workers to get specialist help.

An additional £500,000 will be made available to health boards this financial year to provide dedicated mental health support for health and social care staff during the (Coronavirus) COVID-19 pandemic. 

Health Boards will be able to immediately recruit psychologists and other staff dedicated to supporting the mental health of the health and social care workforce. This funding will be followed by a further £1 million in each of the next two financial years.

Mental Health Minister Clare Haughey said:

“We are doing our best to support health and social care staff, to ensure that they have the resources they require to look after themselves, and that they can get help if necessary.

“We are providing Boards with additional funding via NHS Education for Scotland to deliver a workforce development programme to increase capacity and capability to provide psychological therapies and interventions for health and social care staff if and when they need it.

“We have asked our NHS and social care staff to work through unprecedented times and often in unfamiliar settings. Many have been asked to learn new skills and work in new roles in unfamiliar teams.

“They all, too, have had to adjust to the impact the pandemic has had on our personal lives and communities, including having to care for their own families. This has been, and continues to be a huge ask and we are deeply grateful for the hard work, commitment and professionalism of those working in health and social care, at this time of unprecedented challenge.”

Background:

Staff are encouraged to make use of available support that is available through our National Wellbeing Hub or by calling the 24 Hour Wellbeing Helpline on 0800 111 4191. Since launching, over  64,000 people have used the hub.

Mental Health Minister Clare Haughey has written to the Health and Sport Committee outlining the range of measures that are being taken to support the health and social care workforce.

The workforce development programme includes national and local delivery of training and supervision in psychological therapy and interventions.

Up to 16 FTE posts will be created to support the workforce over the next two financial years. This programme includes national and local delivery of training and supervision in psychological therapy and interventions. The 16 posts include Clinical Psychologists, Counsellors, Project Coordinators, and Assistant Psychologists. 5 FTE posts are already in place, with some sessional cover in place whilst further recruitment is ongoing.

This funding to Boards is one component of a wider programme of work through the Health and Social Care Mental Health Network to support the wellbeing and mental health of the workforce, in line with the commitments made through the Programme for Government.