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Rural Health Week

Communities in rural areas often face a range of complex challenges, not least poor geography hindering access to health services.

Tony McLaren, Breathing Space and NHS Living Life National Coordinator commented: "Living in a remote location can make travelling to and from face-to-face appointments difficult. It’s important that everyone has equal access to the services they need. In terms of mental health support, telephone services such as NHS Living Life can help to bridge this gap for some people."

NHS Living Life is an option for anyone over the age of sixteen suffering low mood, mild to moderate depression and/or anxiety. The service is free and enables people to access self help materials and speak to a Guided Self Help coach over the telephone from the comfort and privacy of their own home.

The Scottish Association for Mental Health (SAMH) are hitting the road to promote mental health services in remote and rural areas through their ‘Know where to go’ for help with your mental health campaign.

"Anyone can feel down and depressed, particularly in this tough economic climate. As long as people are aware that there are lots of different channels of support out there, then hopefully they will be able to access those which are most appropriate to their needs and mental wellbeing" said Tony.

NHS Living Life can be accessed either by GP referral or by phoning the number directly on 0800 328 9655. The service is available Monday to Friday 1pm - 9pm. Callers are asked to provide some details and then arrangements are made to receive an assessment appointment to discuss the service and how help can be provided.