Cancer and mental health

Quick fact: 70% of young people experience depression during their cancer treatment.[1]

We want to develop access to practical support for the prevention, care, treatment and self-management of mental health problems among people living with cancer.

People with cancer are at increased risk of developing mental health problems such as depression and anxiety. Research in 2014 uncovered that 75% of cancer patients with clinical depression do not receive the support and treatment they need in Scotland.[2]

This project should involve research, service mapping, and gathering personal experiences of those affected by cancer (through surveys, interviews and focus groups). We hope to uncover the scale and nature of the mental health needs of those affected by cancer in Scotland; what national/local policy and practice currently exist in Scotland with a focus on cancer and mental health to meet this need; the extent, types and reasons for unmet need; the impact of the above on those affected by cancer; and priorities for action.

We also want to run an end-of-project learning network where we will present the findings of our work to stakeholders (including local and national policymakers, clinical staff, voluntary sector providers, interest groups and those affected by cancer) and partners who have been involved in this initial development phase.


[1] CLIC Sargent (2017) Hidden Costs: Young Lives VS Cancer. Retrieved from…

[2] Naughton, M. J., & Weaver, K. E. (2014) Physical and Mental Health Among Cancer Survivors: Considerations for Long-Term Care and Quality of Life. North Carolina Medical Journal, 75(4), 283–286

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