Scottish Government’s Standards for Health and Social Care to Enhance Care for Vegetarians and Vegans

Vegetarian for Life (VfL) and the Care Inspectorate have joined forces to create new guidance for providing quality care to vegans and vegetarians. The collaboration has resulted in the development of a self-evaluation tool and guidance based on the Scottish Government’s Health and Social Care Standards.

According to the Health and Social Care Standards, individuals should expect to receive respectful and dignified treatment in health, social care, and social work services in Scotland. The newly developed guidance aims to provide reassurance to vegans and vegetarians who require care and support services, with the hope that it will be adopted throughout the UK. Scotland is setting an example for others to follow.

These standards were created to improve the quality of services for all individuals, ensuring that their human rights are respected and upheld. The guidance, titled “Good care for vegetarians and vegans,” will be a valuable resource for inspectors during their evaluations and for care services seeking best practices.

Heather Edwards, Allied Health Professions Consultant at the Care Inspectorate, expressed her enthusiasm for the collaboration, stating, “The Care Inspectorate’s Health and Social Care Improvement Team is thrilled to have worked with Vegetarian for Life on this resource.” She went on to explain that the guidance provides clear guidance for service providers and their staff on how to meet the dietary and lifestyle needs of vegans and vegetarians in their care. It also serves as a self-evaluation tool for care services to identify areas for improvement.

Dr Kim Stringer, Vegetarian for Life’s Director (Scotland), highlighted the importance of respecting an individual’s dietary practices in line with their religious or philosophical beliefs. She stated, “Veganism or vegetarianism can be a large part of someone’s identity and more than just their diet.” She hopes that the self-evaluation tool and guidance will help care services to better understand and cater to the needs of vegans and vegetarians.

The resource is now available on the Care Inspectorate’s website and was recently discussed in a webinar co-hosted by The Care Inspectorate and Vegetarian for Life. The key areas covered in the guidance include providing evidence-based care, meeting individual dietary preferences, and promoting a positive attitude towards individuals’ vegetarian or vegan identity.

For more information on the collaboration and the newly developed guidance, please visit the Care Inspectorate’s website. The link to the webinar can also be found on their website.

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