Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 4:48 pm on 14th May 2019.

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Photo of Lisa Cameron Lisa Cameron Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Mental Health) 4:48 pm, 14th May 2019

Yes, that is an absolutely fantastic point. I was going to mention the fact that our local sports and leisure facility has an agreement with the NHS that GPs can prescribe sports facilities to people so that they can have an exercise regime designed specifically for them. If they can benefit from such a regime, that can maximise their health. All these things actually save money in the long term, and that is why public health is so crucial. We really are investing for the good of the nation.

From my own experience of working in addiction services many years ago, I know that we have to take on board the fact that there are huge levels of comorbidity with mental health. Often, people in addiction services have a history of trauma. They are self-medicating with alcohol or drugs, and they are not coping with life due to their underlying mental health issues. However, those very same people are often refused access to mental health services treatment until they have dealt with their addiction. That is a circular argument, and those who are struggling with mental health and addiction problems never really get the support that they need or deserve. That is why integrated services in relation to addiction are so important.