Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Alex Cole-Hamilton has this afternoon lead the first Scottish Parliament debate on long Covid after new figures published this week showed the number of people reporting experiencing the condition on 2 October soared to 92,000, up 13,000 on the previous month.
Scottish Liberal Democrats are calling for:
- Specialist long Covid clinics in every health board,
- The training of long Covid community nurses to offer in-home support,
- Country-wide access to long Covid physiotherapy and multi-disciplinary rehab,
- A policy of no financial detriment for workers who are absent for long periods of time due to long Covid.
Mr Cole-Hamilton said:
“The Scottish Government has refused to acknowledge the serious and debilitating nature of Long Covid as a condition.
“GPs and charities are doing their best but this debilitating event is on a different scale. The government's webpages aren't much use to someone with air-hunger who feels like they are suffocating and is literally gasping for breath.
“Specialist Covid clinics should exist as a one-stop shop. There is a real advantage in being able to see the medical professionals you need in one place. It could be combined with other help to access wider support and financial advice.
“Many of the people who suffer from Long Covid end up experiencing significant financial challenges either because they are unable to work, or they are having to shell out for treatment or health investigations. Those with caring responsibilities are particularly high risk to this, and the threat of financial difficulties can end up pushing themselves beyond their limits and reducing their quality of life even further.”