Rural Mental Health



Scottish Government Mental Health Strategy 2017-2027

Thursday, March 30, 2017.  ISBN: 9781786526144


In 2016, SRUC’s Rural Policy Centre and the national mental health charity Support in Mind Scotland joined forces to produce the first rural Scotland-wide survey focused on people’s experiences of living with mental ill health. Hundreds of people responded, telling us the challenges they face with their mental health issues, their ideas for improvements in mental health services and their key messages for policy makers which would lead to improvements in their mental wellbeing. The findings from our research have already had an impact on the Scottish Government’s new 10-year Mental Health Strategy and have underpinned the formation of the new National Rural Mental Health Forum. Find out more in this ground-breaking report, produced in partnership with Support in Mind Scotland

National Rural Mental Health Survey Scotland: Report of Key Findings

Assessing the evidence base of living with mental ill health  Briefing: Mental Health in Rural Scotland

Suicide Prevention content

Suicide Prevention


Scottish Government: Suicide Prevention Strategy 2013-2016

Tuesday, December 3, 2013.  ISBN: 9781784120603

The Scottish Government's suicide prevention strategy to 2016 sets out key areas of work that we believe will continue to reduce the number of suicides in Scotland.

In 2017 and early 2018, a series of pre-engagement events took place to help inform the development of a new suicide prevention action plan. These events were run by NHS Health Scotland, Samaritans and the Health and Social Care Alliance; the purpose was to allow people who have lived experience of suicidal thoughts or of bereavement by suicide - and those who directly engage with those affected - the opportunity to contribute their views on what could be done better or differently to reduce suicide and the impact it has on people, families and communities in Scotland. The report on these events is available Samaritans - Suicide Prevention Strategy Report 

Isolation and Loneliness content

Isolation and Loneliness

Loneliness is an increasingly important public issues, as social relationships are central to personal well-being and are crucial for maintaining physical and mental health.

Loneliness can be experienced by people of all ages at different points in their lives. However, the circumstances which increase the risk of loneliness differ by age. For example, leaving education is a common vulnerable time for young people whereas the death of a long-term partner, or the sudden onset of illness or a disability more affects older people.

Organisations, activities and support needs to be available for people who are lonely, and lonely people, and those supporting them, need to be aware of what services are available and how to be able to access these.

NHS Highland The Annual Report of the Director of Public Health 2016


Scottish Government A Connected Scotland: Our Strategy for tackling social isolation and building stronger social connections. 

Is the Scottish Government's national strategy for tackling social isolation and loneliness and is a steps toward their vision for a Scotland where everyone has the opportunity to develop meaningful relationships, regardless of age, status, circumstance, or identity. 



The Gathering 2019, saw VHS and Scottish Rural Health Partnership hold a workshop, "Mental Wellbeing, Social Isolation and Loneliness in Rural Scotland".  The workshop was attended by over 100 people from a variety of organisations. 

You can now view the The Gathering Key Messagesand The Gathering presentations from the event.  



Examples of Some of The Unique Mental Health Education Programmes For Remote And Rural Teams content

Examples of Some of The Unique Mental Health Education Programmes For Remote And Rural Teams

A wide range of our educational resources organised under key remote and rural healthcare topic areas are available on open access via the RRHEAL Turas Learn platform.

Specific mental health: assoication report and conference contributions


Also see:


Reports & Project Outputs content Ask, Tell Videos content

Ask, Tell Videos

NHS Education for Scotland, NHS Scotland and the Scottish Government have produced three animations about mental health.  All Three are linked below

  • Ask, Tell - Look After Your Mental Health: understanding mental health and keeping mentally healthy (open access:
  • Ask, Tell - Save A Life: Every Life Matters: suicide prevention and keeping people safe (open access:
  • Ask, Tell - Have a Healthy Conversation:  supporting compassionate conversations with people who may be experiencing mental ill-health or distress or at risk of suicide (using the ALERT model) (open access: