Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Programme Board minutes: 14 December 2022

Minutes of the meeting that took place on 14 December 2022.

Attendees and apologies


  • Alex Brown, Assistant Programme Manager, NHS National Services Scotland


  • Hugh Masters, Chair, PNIMH-PB , Scottish Government
  • Leanne Anderson, Performance Advisor, Inspiring Scotland
  • Lizzy Archibald, Service Development Advisor, Scottish Government
  • Rach Barlee, Participation Officer, Parent and Infant Mental Health Scotland
  • Roch Cantwell, Vice Chair, PNIMH-PB, Lead Clinician Perinatal Mental Health Managed Clinical Network, Scottish Government, NHS National Services Scotland 
  • Helen Cheyne, Professor of Maternal and Child Health Research, University of Stirling
  • Emma Currer, National Officer, Royal College of Midwives
  • Aman Durrani, Consultant Perinatal Psychiatrist, Royal College of Psychiatrists
  • Fiona Fraser, Consultant Clinical Psychologist, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde
  • Rebecca French, Everyone’s Business Campaign Coordinator for Scotland, Maternal Mental Health Alliance
  • Lauren Kennedy, Lead Nurse for Mental Health and Learning Disabilities, NHS24
  • Lisa Malcolmson, Regional Nurse Consultant, NHS Grampian
  • Carsten Mandt, Senior Programme Manager, Scottish Perinatal Network, NHS National Services Scotland
  • Susan McConachie, Regional Nurse Consultant, NHS Lothian
  • Anne McFadyen, Chair IMH-IAG, Infant Mental Health Lead Perinatal Mental Health Managed Clinical Network, Scottish Government, NHS National Services Scotland
  • Clare McGuire, Head of Programme, NHS Education for Scotland
  • Marie Claire Shankland, Programme Director, NHS Education for Scotland
  • Helen Sloan, Nurse Consultant, NHS Greater Glasgow and  Clyde
  • Joanne Smith, Policy and Public Affairs Manager, NSPCC Scotland
  • Harri Waugh, Perinatal and Early Years Mental Health Team Lead, Scottish Government

In attendance

  • Nadia Abu-Hussain, Mental Health Strategy Engagement, Lead Scottish Government
  • Allison Aitken, Engagement Lead, Mental Health Workforce Team, Scottish Government
  • Louise Christie, Director, Scottish Recovery Network
  • Emma Cormack, Mental Health Senior Policy Adviser, Scottish Government
  • Ross Cowan, Perinatal and Early Years Mental Health Team, Scottish Government
  • Katy Lister, Perinatal and Early Years Mental Health Team, Scottish Government
  • Kelsey Sclater, Perinatal and Early Years Mental Health Team, Scottish Government
  • Graham Dodds, Mental Health Workforce Team, Scottish Government
  • Meg Ferguson, Fund Support Officer, Inspiring Scotland
  • Sarah Gargan, Programme Manager, Perinatal Mental Health Network, NHS National Services Scotland
  • Heather Kelly on behalf of SallyAnn Kelly, Assistant Director, Aberlour
  • Patty Lozano-Casal, Programme Manager, See Me Scotland
  • Bridley Rudd, Senior Research Officer, Mental Health Foundation 


  • Selena Gleadow-Ware, Consultant Psychiatrist, Royal College of Psychiatrists
  • SallyAnn Kelly, Chief Executive, Aberlour
  • Kat Masterson, Participation Officer, Parent and Infant Mental Health Scotland
  • Judy Thomson, Director of Psychology, NHS Education for Scotland

Items and actions

Welcome, apologies and housekeeping

Hugh Masters (Chair) welcomed everyone to the twenty-first Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Programme Board (PB) meeting. Deputies and apologies were noted as above.

Review of minutes and actions

The minutes were agreed as an accurate representation of the October 2022 meeting and would be made available on the group' webpage.

  • the SG Perinatal and Early Years Mental Health policy team has rearranged the Minister for Mental Wellbeing and Social Care’s visit to NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde’s perinatal and infant mental health services to December 2022, as it could not take place last month
  • all women with lived experience who took part in the ‘Supporting Women, Reducing Harm’ event were given vouchers and a thank you letter to acknowledge their input (shared with them through their third sector sponsors.) Inspiring Scotland, who hosted the event, will provide a progress update in their winter newsletter, and the SG team are meeting with colleagues from Drugs Policy directly after the PB meeting
  • the Chair reiterated that this is a cross-cutting workstream that cannot be led by the Mental Health Directorate alone; other Ministers from relevant areas, such as Drugs Policy, must be engaged and commit their continuing support for a short life working group to be developed
  • information collected at the summer health board visits were collated alongside data from the monitoring returns into progress updates that will be published for women, families and clinicians to see what services are available in their local area and across Scotland. Post-meeting note: The Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Services update was published in January 2023

Scottish Government team update

Harri Waugh (SG Team Lead) gave an update on behalf of the SG Perinatal and Early Years Mental Health policy team: 

  • the ‘Families at the Centre’ event took place in November 2022, with over 250 attendees
  • the SG team have welcomed an intern from the Scottish Graduate School of Social Sciences (SGSSS) who is carrying out a literature review on fathers mental health in the perinatal period
  • the SG team have been working on next steps for the Mother and Baby Unit (MBU) in-patient capacity options appraisal. The initial procurement process received no bids so the SG team are exploring alternative options and want to ensure decisions are not rushed and communications are transparent going forward
  • PB Chairs - Hugh Masters, Anne McFadyen, Roch Cantwell - and the SG team are working hard to influence the SG Mental Health Strategy, and are developing options for structuring this programme of work after the PB ends in March 2023

The Chair mentioned that the MBRRACE-UK report, published in November 2022, showed a worrying increase in suicides particularly amongst teenage mothers. PB Chairs have met with Suicide Prevention and Self Harm policy colleagues, and will attend a meeting with the Heads of Midwifery in January 2023 to discuss this and other topics.

Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy

Nadia Abu-Hussain and Emma Cormack (SG Mental Health Strategy and Coordination Team) gave a presentation on the development of the SG Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy. The Strategy team are in process of having the information collected from the Summer 2022 public consultation independently analysed, along with findings from stakeholder engagement activity, and expect an analysis report in the coming month.

The Strategy team are working on a first draft of the revised strategy, which will be shared with the PB and other stakeholders to provide their feedback by early 2023.

A second draft will be circulated for comment, and a final version is aiming to be published in Spring 2023. PB Leads will continue to meet with the Strategy team to provide input on how perinatal and infant mental health should be central to the refreshed strategy.

Mental Health and Wellbeing workforce action plan

Allison Aitken and Graham Dodds (SG Mental Health Workforce Team) shared a slide pack with the meeting papers that provided an overview of the proposed framework for the workforce action plan (launch date tbc) within the Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy. Allison and Graham utilised a Jamboard to collect PB views on identifying sustainable solutions to perinatal and infant mental health challenges and barriers.

The group discussed the difficulty of recruiting to fixed-term posts and the issue of lack of space for services, highlighting the need to secure recurring funding. There was also discussion on the geography of Scotland, the fragility of services in remote and rural areas, and the significance of regional working. The group also talked about third sector provision and the importance of securing ongoing funding for organisations and for communities.

Perinatal peer support resource

Louise Christie (Director, Scottish Recovery Network (SRN)) gave an update on the perinatal peer support resource being developed by SRN. The learning event earlier this year led to meetings with a range of groups offering perinatal peer support, and good working relationships with Inspiring Scotland and Parent Infant Mental Health Scotland (PIMHS). There is enthusiasm across the board and many good examples of peer support in Scotland, new and already established.

The next stage in development is to hold meetings with stakeholders in early 2023 to shape the resource framework. The intention is for the resource to be completed and launched by the end of March 2023.

Peer Support Evaluation Toolkit

Leanne Anderson (Inspiring Scotland) advised that the Peer Support Evaluation Toolkit had been created in partnership by Inspiring Scotland, Evaluation Support Scotland, and 13 peer support organisations. This self-evaluation toolkit is intended to be a practical tool to help organisations develop evaluation plans. Leanne presented a draft copy of the toolkit and the group gave positive feedback. The first round of user testing for the toolkit was extended for the PB until early 2023. Leanne thanked the peer support organisations involved and Evaluation Support Scotland for their input.

Addressing stigma in perinatal and infant mental health

Patty Lozano-Casal (See Me Scotland) and Bridley Rudd (Mental Health Foundation) have been working in partnership to produce Good Practice Guidelines in relation to perinatal and infant mental health stigma, alongside revisiting the evidence review carried out by a SGSSS intern in 2020. Feedback from the PB on initial drafts has been incorporated, and challenges and indicators have been identified for each of the seven guidelines in the document.

The next step is to increase coproduction by user testing the guidelines with people with lived experience and practitioners and setting up a working group, which PB members are invited to join. See Me Scotland and the Mental Health Foundation are keen link to existing pieces of relevant work to widen engagement and learning, and to avoid duplication. It was agreed that PB Leads and the SG policy team would continue discussion around publishing timelines with Patty and Bridley outwith the meeting.

Action: Scottish Government Policy Team

Any other business

The Chair advised that the closing meeting of the PB would take place in-person at a central Edinburgh venue on 22nd March 2023 and members of all subgroups were invited to attend. More information would be shared in early 2023.

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