SAM’s Café opens its doors to Fife’s communities…

Mental health affects us all and the demand on these services is increasing. At Fife’s Health & Social Care Partnership we have made a commitment to challenge stigma and provide joined up accessible services for the people of Fife at a time when they need it.

Opening its doors on Friday 19 April for the first time is SAM’s café, delivered in partnership with the HSCP, SAMH and the Linton Lane Centre. The café is a safe place where people can pop in and get mental health support and information from support workers who understand that every day is different.

SAMH’s Ross Reilly, SAM’s Café Project Peer Development worker talking to guests, representatives and volunteers at the launch

The community style café is open to everyone 16 and over – you don’t need an appointment, you can just pop along. Here, you will have an opportunity to talk, in an informal setting with people who have experienced mental health issues and will work with you to look for solutions or additional support.

Julie Paterson, Divisional General Manager commented, “The implementation of Scotland’s National Mental Health Strategy 2017-2027 has provided additional funds for mental health support including peer and support workers. We have made a real commitment in Fife to look at innovative ways to support people, at the right time and in the right place. SAM’s café aims to do this and will ensure that support extends to weekends and out of hours. The café is part of the community, all are welcome and if people need some additional support, it will be provided by people who know exactly what that feels like.

SAM’s café is open on Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 2pm to 10pm at Linton Lane Centre, Kirkcaldy with support available from SAMH trained staff.

At the official launch, colleagues were joined by people seeking support as soon the doors had opened, there were people offering their support as volunteers and community representatives from Ambulance Service, (Julie Shields and Neil Gillies), Police Scotland’s Sgt Ian Poolman (Kirkcaldy) and Cllr Judy Hamilton showing their support for the project.

Cllr David Graham, spokesperson for Fife’s Integration Joint Board said, “The Health & Social Partnership is continually looking at ways to deliver health and social care services to meet the needs of Fifers. Mental health is a key priority for us and the launch of SAM’s café will add to the services we currently provide. Having an informal environment in a café setting, which offers mental health support will be a great benefit to the community and will go some way to alleviate the discrimination and stigma associated with mental health.”

SAMH’s Ross Reilly, SAM’s Café Project Peer Development worker passing the ‘See Me’ anti-stigma badge to Cllr David Graham

The Well launches in North East Fife

On Thursday 11 April the Well in St Andrews was opened. The Well is a place where people can go for health and wellbeing information – held weekly on Thursdays from 12 to 2pm, at the Community Hub, St Andrews Football and Social Club, Langlands Road, St Andrews.

Colleagues from Fife’s Health & Social Care Partnership were joined by representatives from voluntary organisations for the launch to provide information to the local community on ways to stay well and healthy, to live independently and to talk about what matters to them.

Michael Kellet, Director of Fife’s Health and Social Care Partnership said, “The Well is a one-stop-shop for information, providing residents in North East Fife with the opportunity to chat with health and social care staff and representatives from local community organisation on various topics including equipment to help you stay at home safely, housing concerns, to information on local interest groups and organisations.”

Spokesperson for Fife’s Integration Joint Board Cllr David Graham added: “Bringing together local people, staff from health and social care and community organisations under one roof is a great way of partnership working, Getting to the heart of what matters to our communities and how we can help is key to working together to deliver excellent service. It’s heartening to see the passion and commitment here today and I’m sure the Well will be of great benefit to the community.”

For info:

The Wells is an initiative to connect with local communities – providing information on health and social care, allowing people to speak to the right people first time. The St Andrews Well is the latest Well to open – currently there are Wells in Methil, Buckhaven, Glenrothes, Kennoway, Leven and Kirkcaldy. Wells in Cowdenbeath and Dunfermline will open later this month and Inverkeithing will open in early May. Look out for more information coming soon.


Let’s really raise the bar and tell us what you think about mental health services in Fife

The National Mental Health Strategy (2017 – 2027) emphasises the need to reduce the reliance on hospital beds and to build capacity within our local communities for those who use mental health services. Following these recommendations, the Fife Health & Social Care Partnership is reviewing the mental health support services in Fife.

We have been working closely with partners and colleagues involved in delivering these support services, and those that you have used these services to provide feedback. This feedback has now been incorporated into the draft Mental Health Strategy and we are looking for views on this.

Your views are important to us and will help shape the future mental health services in Fife.

What you need to do:

Please read through the draft strategy and let us know what you think by completing the response form and returning it to Julie O’Neill. Closing date for responses is Friday 19 April 2019.

Contact details:

  • Email:
  • Address: Julie O’Neill, Business Manager, Health & Social Care Partnership, Level 5, Rothesay House, Glenrothes KY7 5QP

Next steps:

Once all the feedback has been considered, the final Mental Health Strategy for Fife will be submitted to various committees for approval and then for formal ratification by the Health & Social Care Partnership Integration Joint Board.


Living with a hearing loss? Find out how we can help

If you, or someone you know is living with a hearing loss, pop along to one of our drop in sessions and find out information and advice on the services available in Fife and how we can help.

Date Time Venue
Tuesday 2 April 2019 10am-12noon Kirkcaldy Galleries Library
Tuesday 7 May 2019 10am-12noon Rosyth Library
Tuesday 4 June 2019 10am-12noon Rothes Hall Library
Tuesday 2 July 2019 10am-12noon Valleyfield Library
Tuesday 6 August 2019 10am-12noon Cupar Library
Tuesday 3 September 2019 10am-12noon Oakley Library
Tuesday 1 October 2019 10am-12noon Dunfermline Carnegie Library and Galleries
Tuesday 5 November 2019 2pm-4pm Cowdenbeath Library
Tuesday 3 December 2019 10am-12noon St Andrews Community Hospital


Fifer awarded honorary fellowship from the University of Edinburgh

Congratulations to local woman Nicola Braid who has been awarded Honorary Fellow status in Nursing Studies from  the University of Edinburgh. Nicola, who is a charge nurse at Lynebank Hospital, received this prestigious award in recognition of how valuable her contributions to research, teaching and strategic consultation could be. Nicola’s clinical leadership in the field of learning disabilities has been praised.

“We are delighted that Nicola, as a former alumni, has been awarded Honorary Fellow status here in Nursing Studies, at the University of Edinburgh. This demonstrates our commitment to develop our curricula to be innovative and shine a light on the field of learning disabilities. We are aware of Nicola’s national reputation, clinical leadership and advocacy for those who experience learning disabilities and therefore working with her will help us strengthen the impact we and our students can have on the lives of those with learning disabilities,” said Professor Aisha Holloway, Head of Nursing Studies, University of Edinburgh.

Nicola will continue to collaborate with the University on the development and provision of innovative learning and teaching through the nursing curriculum and student experience in the field of learning disabilities.

Nicola was inspired to become a nurse because of her aunt Lynn who has learning disabilities. “I could see the challenges that my aunt, and my family faced on a daily basis and I aspired to reduce the discrimination people with learning disabilities faced when accessing health and social care services. My passion has grown since the first day of my undergraduate programme at Edinburgh Napier University which has made me grab all opportunities with both hands”, said Nicola.

With hard work and motivation Nicola developed a network of support with colleagues, senior nurses in NHS Fife and nurses at a national level, successfully completing an Early Clinical Careers Fellowship and MSc in Advancing Nursing Studies at the University of Edinburgh. Increasing her clinical experience has highlighted the significant contribution learning disabilities nurses can have across many areas of nursing. Compassionate, innovative, person centred care has been at the forefront of this profession for years.

“I am delighted to have been awarded honorary fellow status at University of Edinburgh. It is a great achievement and I am proud of the work I’m involved in. It is a great opportunity to raise awareness of the health needs of people with learning disabilities and the role of the learning disabilities nurse across all nursing studies. It is a fantastic opportunity to develop professionally, and personally, to reduce inequalities and improve the lives of people with learning disabilities. It feels rather timely as this year marks 100 years of learning disabilities nurses in the UK so there is a lot of exciting events and news to share,” added Nicola.

No Smoking Day 2019 – quit your way

Across the country around three quarters of a million smokers will make an attempt to quit smoking.

If you are looking to stop smoking, there’s lots of ways to do this. By getting support you are four times more likely to succeed.

Stop smoking services in Fife are free and help you to quit your way.

How to get in touch:


Out of Hours contingency measures to continue

Contingency measures for the overnight Primary Care Emergency Services (PCES) in Fife are to continue for a further six months.

Current arrangements in place:
From 6pm to midnight (Monday to Friday) and 8am to midnight (weekends and public holidays) PCES will continue to be delivered as normal from:

  • Queen Margaret Community Hospital, Dunfermline
  • Glenrothes Community Hospital, Glenrothes
  • St Andrews Community Hospital
  • Victoria Hospital, Kirkcaldy

There will continue to be no changes to the operation of the Minor Injuries Unit at Queen Margaret Hospital.

The contingency measures apply between midnight to 8am, where Primary Care Emergency Services (also known as GP Out of Hours) will be only be available at the Victoria Hospital, Kirkcaldy. The contingency measures were put in place on 9 April 2018 and this will remain in place until the end of August 2019 when a further update will be provided.

This decision has been taken as a result of on-going nursing and medical staffing difficulties and has been taken to ensure patient safety.

Michael Kellet, Director, Fife Health and Social Care Partnership said: “Our patients are our main priority, keeping them safe and providing a quality service. To ensure this happens we need to extend contingency measures for out of hours care for a further six months. Staff shortages continues to be the biggest challenge.”

Michael continued:  “Fife like many other areas across the UK is experiencing the impact of national shortages of key staff in this area. Recruitment of GPs and nursing staff remains a focus for us and feedback from the recent Joining Up Care consultation will help to inform how we move this forward. We will continually review performance over the next six months and provide an update at the end of July.”

Seen Something? Say Something

If you think an adult’s being harmed, get it checked out. It’s right to act on your instinct.

Fifers are being urged to act if they think an adult is being harmed, neglected or taken advantage of, says Fife Adult Support and Protection Committee (ASPC). The ASPC is supporting National Adult Protection Day on 20 February 2019, designed to raise awareness of how some adults are harmed or abused and encourages people to act on their gut feeling when they see things that point to that happening to someone they know. Harm and abuse takes many forms; physical, psychological, financial, sexual harm, neglect and self-harm but there are signs and clues that indicate something’s happening.

Alan Small, Independent Chair of Fife ASPC said: “People often have an instinctive feeling that someone is being harmed or is at risk; a sense that something is not right. By acting on this, and calling Fife Adult Protection Phone Line on 01383 602200 the person at risk could get support and become safe from harm.
We know sometimes people don’t want to get involved, for fear of being seen to intrude on other’s privacy or that they might be wrong about the situation. But it is vital to raise your concerns. And it is safe to do – you don’t need to provide your personal details; the Social Work Service will check the situation sensitively, and support will be given, if needed.
“Harm and abuse can affect anybody, but adults who can’t look after themselves or find it difficult to stand up for themselves may be at greater risk due to their personal circumstances, or because of a physical or learning disability, illness or infirmity. We all have a responsibility to look out for people in our communities.
“The message is simple – if you think an adult is at risk of harm and something feels wrong, you’re right to get it checked out. If you’ve seen something, say something. For more information, visit or follow our stories about how adult protection intervention has had a positive outcome, on the Fife Council Facebook page.

Fife participation in See Me’s Time to Talk Day

Today is Time to Talk day, which is being led in Scotland by See Me, the programme to end mental health discrimination, aims to get people all over the UK starting meaningful conversations on mental health. Fife Health and Social Care Partnership are working to provide help and advice on mental health issues in a number of ways.

Fife is one of the national pilot areas for Health & Work Support which provides specialist support for people experiencing mental health problems in the workplace. Health and Work Support is a single point of contact for people who live and work in Fife. It allows people with a health issue or a disability who are struggling to stay at work or recently unemployed, to get fast access to support. Employers have an important role to play and the service can help with policies and procedures, mental health training for managers and other workers, and provide lots of resources and information. Everything is FREE and CONFIDENTIAL. To find our more contact the Health and Work Support Service on 0800 019 2211 or visit

Calum Irving, See Me director, said: “Less than half of us feel comfortable speaking about our mental health, especially when we’re struggling. The fear of being judged, or even discriminated against in work, at school, or when asking for help, stops people reaching out.
“But conversations have the power to change lives, however they take place, whether face to face, over the phone, or on social media using #TimeToTalk.”
Time to Talk Day is UK-wide, with Time to Change in England partnering with See Me in Scotland, Change Your Mind Northern Ireland and Time to Change Wales.

Malcolm Joss is an Fife Health & Social Care occupational therapist and Case Manager who conducts workplace assessments added: “Health and Work Support is a free and confidential service for people living and/or working in Fife. We support people at work who are struggling with their physical or mental health. We complete a full holistic assessment and together with the client, identify a plan which may include referral to physiotherapy or psychological therapies. We can also offer workplace assessments and plans to help the employee remain at work without having to take time off.

Listen out for Health and Work Support information on Kingdom FM radio all this week.

To make it easier for adults in Fife to obtain psychological help for common emotional problems a new website has recently been launched, Access Therapies Fife

Health and Social Care partners in Fife are also coming together to develop a shared Work and Wellbeing Strategy and emphasise the important need to Just Ask and Just Talk.

Pioneering new £1.1m service for cancer patients in Fife

A new service to ensure cancer patients are offered emotional, practical and financial support has been launched in Fife.

Macmillan Cancer Support and the Fife Health and Social Care Partnership are working with a range of partners across the region to make sure cancer patients across the area can access all the help they need – by making just one phone call.

The new Fife Macmillan Improving the Cancer Journey Service will see every newly diagnosed cancer patient in Fife sent a letter offering a meeting with a dedicated one-to-one support worker. The worker will then help the patient access a wide range of support, from benefits advice and emotional support to help at home or with other practical needs. Anyone currently living with cancer can also access the service by simply calling the team to arrange an appointment.

Macmillan Cancer Support has invested £1.1m into the project, which will see the Health and Social Care Partnership and other third sector organisations working together to provide a seamless, accessible and personal support for people affected by cancer.

Fife is a region with higher than average incidence of all main cancers. There are 13,500 people living with cancer in Fife and we expect this to grow to over 24,000 by 2030.

While it’s good news that advances in treatment mean that more people than ever are surviving, it also means that people living with cancer are living longer, often with long-term effects of treatment or other health conditions that have a huge impact on health, wellbeing and independence. Many of them don’t know where to go for help coping with the non-medical effects of the illness.

Macmillan’s Head of Services in Scotland, Janice Preston, said: “Cancer has a huge impact on every aspect of people’s lives and many patients tell us they don’t know where to turn for help. This new service should make sure everyone in Fife with cancer has someone to call on for help, no matter what they need. We hope this service will transform cancer support in Fife.

“It’s thanks to the continued support from people locally, who fundraise for us and donate so generously, that we are able to fund this vital new service. With their help we are able to make a huge difference to the lives of people affected by cancer in Fife.”

Michael Kellet, Director, Fife Health & Social Care Partnership added: “This new service will make a huge difference for those diagnosed with cancer and their family and friends. Getting information and advice on the things we take for granted will help support people to deal with their illness. It’s thanks to the partnership working across Health & Social Care Partnership, Macmillan Cancer Support, Fife Council, NHS Fife and the voluntary sector that we are able to provide this service.

The project is open to everyone aged 16 and over living with cancer regardless of their cancer type or where they live in Fife. To find out more about the Fife Macmillan Improving the Cancer Journey service call 01592 578 076 or

At the launch (from left) Janice Preston, Cllr David Graham, Shirley-Anne Somerville, Jacquie Stringer, Bruce Hamilton, Valerie Ireland and Michael kellet