Date lodged: 18 August 2016
To ask the Scottish Government what assistance it provides to veterans with mental health issues.
Answered by: Maureen Watt 1 September 2016
The Scottish Government sets national direction of policy on mental health and provides funding to agencies, including NHS boards and local authorities, to support implementation of policy. The management of local actions in implementing national policy, and decisions on local spending priorities are the responsibility of relevant local agencies. It is therefore the responsibility of NHS boards and local authorities to work with their partners and regularly review spending decisions to deliver fit for purpose services which respond to local needs.
Direct funding this year to support veterans mental health from the Scottish Government includes: £1.224 million to Combat Stress to provide specialist mental health services at the Hollybush House facility in Ayr for Veterans resident in Scotland through commissioned service arrangements with NHS Scotland;£200,000 to Combat Stress to support community outreach across Scotland; and £200,000 to Veterans First Point Lothian, a one-stop-shop to support veterans and their families living in Lothian no matter what their need may be.
Veterans First Point Scotland continues to develop a network of local services based on the Lothian model to support veterans and their families across Scotland. Of the seven additional services being developed – four are currently operational (Borders; Fife; Highland and Tayside). The other three are at an advanced stage of development and are expected to be operational soon (Ayrshire & Arran; Grampian; and Lanarkshire).