Scottish Health Survey 2015 - volume 1: main report

Findings and trends of the Scottish Health Survey 2015, providing information on the health of people living in Scotland.

This document is part of a collection

Foreword from the Chief Medical Officer

This report presents the findings of the 2015 Scottish Health Survey. The survey provides data extending back over 20 years and has been running to a continuous design since 2008. The 2012-2015 surveys were commissioned by the Scottish Government and produced by a collaboration between ScotCen Social Research, the MRC/ CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit at the University of Glasgow, The Centre for Population Health Sciences at the University of Edinburgh and The Public Health Nutrition Research Group at Aberdeen University.

The survey provides us with an immensely valuable collection of data on cardiovascular disease and related risk factors including smoking, alcohol, diet, physical activity and obesity. Information on general health, mental health and dental health is also included.

The 2015 report includes a chapter focussing specifically on mental health and wellbeing for the first time and presents data on prevalence of multiple long-term conditions. Data showing reported alcohol consumption based on the new alcohol guidelines and responses to new questions on vitamin D supplements are also reported for the first time this year. The report includes some interesting analyses linking risk factors for parents and their children.

With each additional survey year, the ability to analyse trends adds considerably to the usefulness of this data source, while combining data from previous surveys allows for more detailed analysis of specific health conditions, risk factors and related health behaviours.

I am pleased to welcome this valuable report and to thank the consortium led by ScotCen Social Research for their hard work in conducting the survey and preparing this report. Most importantly, I would also like to thank the 6,421 people who gave their time to participate in the survey. The information they have provided is invaluable in developing and monitoring public health policy in Scotland.

Dr Catherine Calderwood
Chief Medical Officer for Scotland
Scottish Government Health Directorates


Email: Julie Landsberg,

Back to top