The emotional and mental health of new mothers is of paramount importance, and it is vital that the NHS in Scotland give due attention to ensuring that new mothers with mental health problems get the treatment and support they need.
I am immensely disappointed that the ongoing staffing crisis at NHS Scotland has led to so many new mothers not getting this attention, and in many cases not even being asked about their emotional or mental health. This forms part of a pattern of unsatisfactory mental health treatment in NHS Scotland – as of 2016, a fifth of children and adults with mental health issues were not seen within the 18-week treatment time target.
Responsibility for this state of affairs lies with the SNP-led Scottish Government, and its mismanagement of the NHS. My Scottish Conservative colleagues in Holyrood will continue to stand up for patients across Scotland, including new mothers, and hold the Scottish Government to account on their failure to deliver the world-class health service we deserve.
The Scottish Conservatives believe firmly in parity of esteem between physical and mental health, and we have a clear plan for mental health in Scotland. This includes, among other initiatives, a review of all services available for mothers-to-be and mothers of young children, with a view to expanding antenatal and postnatal mental health services.