COVID-19: Guidance issued to NHS Management duty of care to staff: FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002

Information requested

“In view of the anticipated spread of coronavirus, what guidance has been issued to NHS Management in Scotland regarding their duty of care with respect to members of staff at all levels, specifically in relation to recognising and protecting staff from overwork, and stress while the virus spreads throughout the population at large.”


I enclose a copy of some of the information you requested

  • Minister for Mental Health Clare Haughey is leading work to ensure that a range of practical and psychological support is in place for health staff and we are keen to complement and build on the work already underway within Boards.
  • Ms Haughey has written to Boards about the importance of this issue and highlighted key messages and approaches. These letter are available in the annex.
  • We have also encouraged organisations clearly to signpost their workforce to support that can be accessed, including through trade unions and professional bodies.
  • We are planning to ensure that appropriate mental health services are available to staff members who might require support and care over the coming months, working with partners in Boards and NHS Education for Scotland.

Information in the Public Domain
Most of the information you have requested is available in the public domain.
Letters issued by the Health and Social Care Directorates can be found here:
A Director’s Letter was issued on 14 April 2020 entitled “Staff Wellbeing And Support: Employers’ Duty Of Care During Covid-19 Pandemic” and can be found here:
Latest Consolidated Staff Guidance for NHS Scotland Staff and Managers can be found here:
Scottish Terms and Conditions issued guidance can be found here:
NHS Education for Scotland (NES) has made available a COVID-19 psychological first aid tool on the TURAS website to support the workforce specifically this resources directs to Pyschosocial Mental Health and Wellbeing
Support for Staff we have ensured that the NHS Inform Covid website provides advice on maintaining mental as well as physical health and can be found here:

Under section 25(1) of FOISA, we do not have to give you information which is already reasonably accessible to you. If, however, you do not have internet access to obtain this information from the website(s) listed, then please contact me again and I will send you a paper copy.

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at

FOI-202000020856 Information released


Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road

Back to top