Today we welcome the recommendations of the Economic Advisory Group, initiated by the Scottish Government, to address the economic impacts of COVID-19. The recommendations, outlined earlier this week in the Advisory Group’s report, highlight the importance of a wellbeing approach to the shifted economy.

As Scotland begins to relax the lockdown measures that have been necessary to control the COVID-19 pandemic, we recognise the importance of adequate income and employment support to protect the long term health of the nation. That’s why we’re working with partners across the third sector and national and local government to consider the best ways of ensuring health outcomes are at the heart of economic recovery.

The briefing on protecting the health of the working age population and their families as lockdown reduces focusses on preventing poverty, supporting people to work in fair employment that protects and promotes good health, and creating an inclusive economy.
Donna Burnett, Organisational Lead of Income and Work, Public Health Scotland said:

"Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the UK and Scottish governments have implemented a range of employment and income measures to support the workforce to stay home and be protected from the virus. Income and employment play a significant role in our health and wellbeing and there is therefore a need to ensure employment and income support continues to be available to minimise the impact on people’s future health and prevent health inequalities from widening.

"As we begin to emerge from lockdown, designing an economy that is inclusive could improve the resilience of the wider population to the impact of future economic shocks. Economic recovery focussed on environmental sustainability, job quality, and providing everyone with a healthy standard of living, will protect health and help reduce health inequalities and we look forward to working with Local and National Government, and our partners across the public health landscape to helping make that happen."

This briefing has been prepared as part of Public Health Scotland’s comprehensive programme of work on ‘Social and System Recovery’ to assess and advise on how to prevent against the distancing measures inadvertently impacting on people’s health. This includes advising on recovery in an equitable way where health is affected.

Read the Protecting Future Working Populations briefing (PDF)

Last updated: 06 October 2022