Figures show Scots are suffering longer
Scots are being hit harder by long covid than other UK countries and better support is needed, a charity has warned.
Chest Heart and Stroke Scotland (CHSS) is urging people to seek support through its Long Covid Support Service after ONS estimated figures on self-reported long Covid showed that thousands of people in Scotland are being devastated by the condition, many of them for more than 12 months.
Sufferers and family members can access support, advice and reassurance in dealing with the most common symptoms – such as breathlessness, fatigue and the impact on mental wellbeing.
The charity says that the Scottish Government’s new £10m fund for health boards to provide long Covid services should also help give people clarity about the help they can expect to receive, starting with diagnosis and treatment from the NHS.
Jane-Claire Judson, chief executive at Chest Heart and Stroke Scotland, said: “It’s really worrying to see estimates that a quarter of people living with long Covid in Scotland find their lives completely changed by the condition – higher than the UK average. People who were once fit and healthy are telling us they’re struggling to get out of bed, look after their young children or even walk to end of their street.
"We need to make sure that people have far better access to long Covid support in 2022 to stop the trend from worsening. There are good services out there to help, but they need to be joined up.
"For example, the majority of GPs can’t automatically refer into our support service because local data sharing agreements need to be in place. We need a national approach or the support of Health Boards and the Scottish Government to get these agreements in place right across the country."