Michael Matheson has met representatives of brain injury charity Headway to discuss the need for local support for people affected by the devastating consequences of brain injury.

The Falkirk West MSP reaffirmed his support for brain injury survivors after visiting a Headway exhibition at the Scottish Parliament last week.

In 2017, while serving as Justice Secretary, Mr Matheson supported the launch of the charity’s Brain Injury Identity Card in Scotland. The card is designed to help police identify brain injury survivors at the earliest opportunity to ensure that they receive suitable support when they come into contact with the criminal justice system.

Mr Matheson said: “I was delighted to have this opportunity to catch up again with representatives from Headway to learn more about how our local community can better support survivors and their loved ones.

“The wide-ranging effects of an acquired brain injury can be devastating and last a lifetime. Rehabilitation and support is absolutely vital to survivors and for their families and carers, and I very much appreciate the work Headway does in the Falkirk area.”

Headway’s public affairs manager Dr Clare Mills said: “We are very grateful to Michael Matheson for coming to talk to us in Parliament and for showing his support.

“Whether as a result of trauma, stroke, brain tumour, illness or infection, a brain injury has a profound impact not only on the survivor, but on their family, friends, colleagues and the wider community too.”

The latest figures show that in the NHS Forth Valley area alone, around 1,200 people are admitted to hospital each year with an acquired brain injury related diagnosis. Thankfully, survivors and their loved ones are able to access local support at Headway Falkirk.

Constituents who need support can also call Headway’s freephone, nurse-led helpline on 0808 800 2244, email helpline@headway.org.uk or visit www.headway.org.uk for more information.