NHS Greenspace Demonstration Project

NHS Greenspace

In 2007, NHS Health Scotland, Forestry Commission Scotland (external link) and Scottish Natural Heritage (external link) established the Green Exercise Partnership (GEP) (external link) to promote better health and quality of life for people in Scotland through greater use of the outdoors for physical activity and contact with nature.

The GEP works to raise awareness of the range of health benefits that being in and being active in the outdoors can bring, and the contribution that green exercise can make to a Healthier Scotland if it is embraced by the health and social care sector.

NHS Greenspace - realising the potential

Since 2010, in conjunction with NHS Health Facilities Scotland (external link), the GEP has co-ordinated the NHS Greenspace Demonstration Project (external link).  The project has provided guidance and practical support to NHS Area Health Boards in order to help them realise their ambitions for maximising the potential of the NHS outdoors estate as a health-promoting resource.

The NHS Greenspace Demonstration Project aims to:

  • promote awareness, engagement and ownership among relevant NHS Scotland Health Boards of the opportunity to unlock this important Health Promoting Health Service resource
  • support Boards to deliver practical enhancement and better use of the outdoors estate within NHS ownership or influence
  • demonstrate good practice and mainstream the use of greenspace on the NHS estate as a health promoting asset consistent with national policy objectives

The following documents provide the context in which efforts to use NHS estate assets to improve health outcomes for staff, patients, visitors and the local community fit:

GEP Contacts

Kevin Lafferty, Forestry Commission Scotland, Access, Health and Recreation Advisor. Call 01698 368539 (M/W/F) or 03000 675292 (Tu/Th) or email: kevin.lafferty@forestry.gsi.gov.uk

Flora Jackson, NHS Health Scotland, Programme Manager. Call 0131 314 5388 or email: flora.jackson@nhs.net

Alan Macpherson, Scottish Natural Heritage, Recreation, Volunteering and Outdoor Learning Group Manager. Call 01463 725 240 or email: alan.macpherson@snh.gov.uk

Douglas Flint, NHS National Services Scotland, Head of Sustainability, Health Facilities Scotland. Call 0141 207 1853 or email: dflint@nhs.net

Further details on the Green Exercise Partnership and demonstration projects can be found on the Physical Activity and Health Alliance website.

Updated 27 August 2015

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