The SNP Government has allocated an £8 million package to support the wellbeing of health and social care staff across Scotland - an increase of £3 million on 2020/21.
The increased support will help fund a number of immediate recovery actions and lead to the development of a National Wellbeing programme.
The priority areas for action will include the ongoing development of the National Wellbeing Hub, National Wellbeing Helpline, and psychological interventions and therapies for staff.
Coaching for Wellbeing, digital apps and the Workforce Specialist Service for regulated staff will also be provided, along with time and training for staff to support each other as teams. More practical support for staff like rest spaces will also be provided.
Social care and primary care will be targeted with £2 million of support in recognition of the specific needs of staff working in those services in responding to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Kenneth Gibson MSP said:
“NHS and social care workers deal with extraordinary pressures at work, and their wellbeing remains a critical priority that will influence the way that Scotland’s health and social services recover.
"We know that the pandemic has affected staff in a range of ways and this £8 million package of support will help meet the basic practical and emotional needs which workers tell us are right for them, alongside more specialised mental health support where this is needed.”
The package will support staff wherever they work in the system, from acute hospital wards to community settings, supplementing the resources that are in place locally.
Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) Chief Executive, Lorraine Gray said:
"Over the last 18 months social care workers have been at the heart of our response to the COVID-19 pandemic, providing a vital lifeline for the people they support when normal routines, services and contact with family and friends were severely disrupted.
"I heartily welcome this new funding for our valued social care workers to make sure they have the resources and practical support they need to take care of themselves and their own wellbeing."
The National Wellbeing Hub provides a range of self-care and wellbeing resources for all staff, unpaid carers, volunteers and their families to enhance personal resilience and signposts to relevant mental health and support services.
The National Wellbeing Helpline (0800 111 4191) provides a 24/7 service to those who require psychological support and can offer advice, signposting and onward referral to local services where required. Meanwhile the Workforce Specialist Service offers confidential mental health assessment and treatment for regulated health and social care professionals in Scotland.