At any one time 1 person in 5 in Scotland is experiencing
mental health problems. A high proportion of this is
due to depression and stress. Approximately 1/3 of children
and 1/4 of pensioners live in low-income households,
which can badly affect their state of health.
Health is the state of mental, physical and social
well-being and not just the absence of disease. Scotland’s
abysmal health record will only be improved by tackling
the causes of ill health such as poverty, poor diet,
poor housing, pollution and an unhealthy environment.
Scottish Green Party policies are geared towards making
a lasting improvement in the health of Scottish people
by tackling causes, not just symptoms. We believe that
only by living a healthy lifestyle in a healthy environment
will our health improve substantially. We are confident
that more effective preventative and complementary measures
will free up some of the huge amounts of money currently
spent on drugs and other symptom-based treatments.
Greens recognise the continuing need for the availability
of a full range of medical treatment free at the point
of use. We will, however, also place far more emphasis
on preventative medicine and public health education.
We believe that an effective health service requires
patients to have access to a range of motivated and
skilled health workers.
Greens also regard illegal drug use as a health issue.
We will campaign to change the emphasis in tackling
drug misuse from arrest and prosecution to control,
harm reduction and rehabilitation. Our aim is to break
the link between drug use and crime.
Green MSPs will work for the following:
We will improve pay and conditions for health
professionals and include complementary treatments
of proven value within the NHS. We will update training
for healthcare workers, and include more about nutrition,
mental health and complementary therapies. We will
end league tables for hospitals, phase out PFIs
and PPPs for building new hospitals and ensure that
mental health services are properly funded
We will improve the food served by the NHS to
both staff and patients. Organic, locally produced
food will be used and, when appropriate, healthy,
low-salt, low-fat, low-sugar foods will be served.
Vegetarian, vegan and religiously appropriate food
will also be readily available.
We will promote a healthy lifestyle and preventative
medicine and ensure greater community participation
in local health policy decision-making. We will
provide more support for local and community hospitals
and reduce centralisation of hospital resources.
We will launch a major new ‘healthy hospitals’
initiative, with the aim of ending the misery of
thousands of patients who contract infections while
We will establish community-based treatment centres
where drugs can be obtained on prescription and
where there will be teams of workers to help those
with drug problems. The supply of cannabis will
be allowed in specifically licensed premises, and
cultivation and possession of cannabis for personal
use will no longer be a criminal offence. There
will also be greater support for harm-reduction
and withdrawal programmes for users of alcohol and
tobacco as well as illegal drugs.
Poor diet is a major cause of ill health. To improve
the diet of young people, Greens will ensure that
every child attending a local authority managed
school has access to a free, tasty and nutritious
lunch. This would also remove the social stigma
attached to the current means-tested free school
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