Shetland’s MSP, Scottish Liberal Democrat, Beatrice Wishart is reaching out to ‘long-Covid’ constituents recovering from Covid-19 to gain an understanding of local demand for long-Covid medical assistance in Shetland. There have been calls from ‘long-Covid’ patients for more support.
Since December last year, 60 ‘long-Covid’ clinics have been available in England. Six months later no such clinics exist in Scotland. The First Minister has stated that this is because ‘there is still a lack of understanding about which specialisms are needed to respond to ‘long-Covid’’.
Ms Wishart asked the Scottish Government for an update on ‘long-Covid’ on 1st June. A holding response issued by the new Cabinet Secretary for Health on 15th June, stated decisions 'are based on the latest available evidence' and for patients to receive ‘rehabilitation in a setting that is as close to their home as possible'.
Ms Wishart has also questioned the First Minister on ensuring safe domestic travel to the isles and rural areas. Further, Ms Wishart has raised the matter of 17-year-old islanders travelling to university or college to start the new academic year without Covid-19 vaccinations. The government response is that it is waiting for updated advice from the JCVI (Joint Committee on Vaccinations and Immunisation) on vaccinating people under the age of 18 years.
Ms Wishart said:
‘I would urge anyone suffering from ‘long-Covid’ to get in contact with their GP in the first instance. You can also contact me with any surrounding issues you may face.
‘It is only with an accurate understanding of how many people are still recuperating from Covid-19 that we can get the medical assistance Shetland patients need.
‘Shetland needs its voice heard in the arrangement of ‘long-Covid’ aftercare. No sufferer can be expected to do excessive travelling.
‘Covid-19 has had a large impact on so many of our lives. For some every day is now a struggle after contracting Covid-19. We cannot leave those people to suffer in silence.’
Notes to Editors
NHS England - Long COVID patients to get help at more than 60 clinics
The First Ministers response to a ‘long-Covid’ question.
Ms Wishart’s ‘long-Covid’ question to the Scottish Government.
Ms Wishart’s Under 18s studying and Covid-19 vaccine question to the Scottish Government.
Ms Wishart’s Under 18s studying and Covid-19 vaccine follow up question to the Scottish Government
Ms Wishart’s safe travel question to the First Minister.