The Carers’ Act is here: Scott Fissenden

Scott Fissenden, Change and Improvement Manager talks about how Fife has been preparing for the Carers’ Act coming into force.

During January and February Fife’s Health & Social Care Partnership was consulting with carers before the introduction of the new Carer Act.  The Act came into life from 1st April 2018 and introduces a range of new duties designed to support carers’ health and wellbeing and help make caring more sustainable.  The consultation gave carers the chance to share their views about what makes a difference to them in their caring role and what supports we should invest in.

Thank you to everyone who participated in the consultation.  There were 258 responses received.  Some of the key themes and priorities that emerged were:

  • Providing easy to access information so carers have the means to make decisions about to fit caring in with their other personal priorities.
  • Improving the consistency and speed of information from professionals to support caring and improving communications between professionals.
  • Help for carers to make plans for their future and also for carer emergencies.
  • To be more involved in decisions affecting caring and the person the carers care for particularly in advance to being discharged from hospital.
  • Having a greater role for advocates particularly from within the third sector.

We are now in the process of developing a Fife Carers Strategy and an action plan for improvement over the next few years.  We will keep people up to date on our progress through

Health Promotion: Ruth Bennett

Ruth Bennett, Health Promotion Manager, Health Promotion Service gives an insight into how the team are working to reduce health inequalities and improve the wellbeing of people in Fife.

Our work is to support and encourage Fifers to achieve their full potential, stay well and develop skills and confidence so they have more control over their own health and wellbeing.

Our team is made up of over 50 people with a vast variety of knowledge, skills and expertise which we use to reach out to a broad range of people across Fife, from young children to older people, this makes our work wide and varied.

Health Promotion Service

We help individuals to stop smoking in a range of ways which includes our Smoke Free Saturday sessions in Leven Library, Stop Smoking Clinics throughout Fife as well as our ‘What’s In Your Lungs Campaign’ where our mobile unit heads out into the community to offer people a free, no appointment necessary check to see how much carbon monoxide is in their lungs and offer free quick and easy advice to quit the cigs.

The localities team go into the heart of the communities in Fife to identify where their specialist advice and expertise could support community members to work together to achieve the best health outcome for residents.

Our workplace teams visit a range of businesses and services across Fife to help them reduce short and long-term absence, minimise the risk of accidents and near misses and increase worker engagement.  Not only does this support a healthier, happier workforce but also makes financial sense, with workplaces making cost savings as a result.

We also support the education of students and pupils to live healthier lifestyle, recently visiting Fife Colleges’ Levenmouth Campus and working closely with college staff.

For more details on all aspects of our service see our Health Promotion Service leaflet  or contact us on 01592 226484 or and we will direct you to the right person to meet your needs.


iMatter: the results are in

The iMatter results are in: and nearly two thirds of you took the time to respond.

iMatter – Directorate Report 2017

The Partnership as a whole achieved a response rate of 63%, with 316 teams out of a total of 473 responding.

Not every individual team managed this year to secure more than a 60% response rate but given this is our first year it is a fantastic start.

Using the iMatter tool gave you and your colleagues the chance to feedback to your manager and the Partnership, what you think about your working experience and how you, your team and your managers can improve it.

The overall Partnership report, which details the views of all who responded, is being cascaded to the line managers of all 473 teams and can also be read here.

This report is very positive with high scores in relation to how staff feel about the support they have to do their work and the sense of achievement they feel. The results also show the majority of staff feel their managers are approachable, care about their health and well-being and they have trust and confidence in their managers.

Importantly staff give a high recommendation that they would be happy for a friend or relative to access our services and would recommend their organisation as a good place to work.

There are of course always areas for improvement and that is the really important next stage of the iMatter journey.

What next

Your line managers should now be arranging to meet with you and your team colleagues to discuss your individual team report and explore how you think things could be improved. This discussion should lead to the development of a team action plan where you can agree up to three improvements which you, as a team, would like to see happen in the year going forward.

So what difference is any of this going to make? Evidence shows that happy, motivated, confident staff that care about and look after one another also deliver great services to their patients, clients or service users.  We want to ensure that everyone working in the Partnership, regardless of the work they do have the opportunity to improve their work experience in their team.

This is the real opportunity to challenge the “So what?” question.

If you haven’t seen your iMatter team report yet, ask your manager if it is available. If your team hasn’t got over the 60% response rate this year and not generated a report you still have the opportunity to meet with your manager and share your collective views and produce an action plan with your suggested improvements.

I hope that you take the opportunity to contribute to improving how your team works. I would like to hear the stories of your journey, good or bad, so that we can improve the iMatter process as we continue to make the partnership a great place to work and deliver excellent services to the people of Fife.   Get in touch with me or call 01592 648187

Bruce Anderson

Head of Staff Governance


Guest Blog: Mental Health – Calum Irving

Calum Irving, Director with See Me puts the spotlight on the importance of joint working to tackle the stigma that surrounds mental health.

Calum Irving

See Me and Fife Health and Social Care Partnership have been working together over this last year to tackle mental health stigma across various aspects of people’s lives.

The chance for See Me to work with the Partnership was great for us, as we are strengthening our focus on changing negative attitudes and behaviours towards mental health, within health and social care.

To really make a change, we need to work with organisations who have the greatest potential to enhance our reach and impact. Any change we make needs to be sustainable so we can work together effectively in communities facing the greatest inequalities.

The biggest event we have worked on with the Partnership this year is the simultaneous Walk a Mile events in March at Stratheden Hospital and in Silverburn Park.

The idea of Walk a Mile started with health care. Working with activist Chris McCullough Young we wanted to create a campaign which would bring people in health care together, to Walk a Mile in each other’s shoes, where people using the services and those working in them, could see each other as the people they really are, not the labels they have.

So it was fantastic to have the two walks in Fife, which aimed to do exactly that, and spread the vital message, that it is okay not to be okay, and mental health can be a topic of everyday conversation.

This message was also heard at our Pass the Badge event, where conversations on mental health were had and encouraged others to keep the conversation going.

We all have a role in tackling stigma and discrimination and together we can improve the culture around mental health, so its impact on every aspect of our lives, including where we live, learn, work and receive care isn’t ignored.