'Devastating' impact as 81,000 Scots living with Long Covid

Scots may be “suffering in silence”, with Long Covid, a leading charity has warned, as new figures estimated around 81,000 people are living with the condition in Scotland.

The true figure could be as high as 89,000, according to a new report from the Office of National Statistics.

Survey data shows 34,000 Scots reported symptoms of Long Covid a year or more after first becoming infected with the virus.

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Of those who reported Long Covid across the UK, almost 66 per cent said it affected their day-to-day activities, and 19 per cent said the condition had lmited their ability to do day-to-day activities a lot.

Picture: ShutterstockPicture: Shutterstock
Picture: Shutterstock

Fatigue was the most common symptom reported, followed by shortness of breath, muscle ache, and difficulty concentrating.

The condition was most commonly reported in women, those aged 35 to 69, and those living in more deprived areas.

Chest Heart and Stroke Scotland (CHSS) has urged Long Covid sufferers to get in touch for support.

The charity warned people are “suffering in silence”, and more needs to be done to support those with symptoms of Long Covid.

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GP Amy Small, who has Long Covid and has been working with CHSS on the issue, said the impact can be “devastating”.

“The Scottish Government needs to move faster in this and take direct action to ensure the NHS can provide the best care for patients with Long Covid across Scotland and reach as many of those in need as possible,” she said.

Jane-Claire Judson, Chief Executive of CHSS, said: “We are worried that so many people living with Long Covid are still suffering in silence and feel like they have nowhere to turn.”

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She added: “People living with Long Covid tell us that they still feel as if they are having to fight for their care right now. We need to make sure things click into place better for people from getting tests right through to getting that long-term support to live well.”

Faced with calls for specialist clinics to treat those with Long Covid, the Scottish Government has said this may be considered by some health boards but different approaches will be taken.

The government has said it will strengthen existing NHS services, partner with the third sector, and support research to learn more about the condition.

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