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DOCTORS in Scotland are urging parties to consider offering free gym memberships to young people in the most deprived areas to improve health and wellbeing.
In its manifesto, published today ahead of May’s Holyrood elections, the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh said the policy could cost £26.4 million per year, but could be reduced if agreements are struck with local councils to reduce membership fees.
People between the ages of
16 and 24 in the most deprived areas of Scotland have been hit hard by the pandemic and may struggle to pay for a membership, which could affect their health, the college warns.
Acting president Professor Angela Thomas said: “As we begin to think about the post-Covid recovery of health services, we must consider new ways to improve the health of the nation.
“One of the ways to improve health is through exercise, with an awareness of the economic barriers that people often experience.
“We know that exercise can improve not only physical health but mental health too.”
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