Special NHS centres set up to tackle long Covid – as 1 in 5 develop lasting symptoms

THE NHS has set up special centres for thousands of people suffering with long Covid – as one in five people develop lasting symptoms after contracting the coronavirus.

Assessment centres are now taking referrals from GPs for people experiencing conditions such as anxiety, brain fog, breathlessness, depression, fatigue and other debilitating symptoms.

⚠️ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updates

Patients will need to be referred by their GP who will asses their symptoms so that they can rule out other health conditions before referring patients to the long Covid centres.

There will be a total of 69 centres dotted across the country and NHS England has coughed up £10 million in funding for the network of clinics.

Sir Simon Stevens, NHS chief executive hailed the move and said the NHS was “taking action” to help those still suffering from ongoing symptoms.

Research from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) shows that one in five people with Covid-19 develop longer term symptoms and around 186,000 people suffer from problems for up to 12 weeks.

Some 11.5 per cent were still suffering fatigue after five weeks, 11.4 a cough and 10.1 per cent a headache.

 

A further 8.2 per cent still had no sense of taste and 7.9 per cent a loss of smell, the Office for National Statistics found.

It is the first time the official body has released data on people suffering long Covid.

The numbers, taken from the ONS national infection survey, do not include people in hospital, care homes or prisons.

Dr Amitava Banerjee, from University College London, said long-Covid is already hitting the quality of life of previously healthy people.

He added: “Knowing the prevalence of long Covid and its risk factors is essential for planning how to prevent and treat it.

“Although post-viral symptoms are common, whether after flu or other coronaviruses, the scale of this pandemic and the potential number of infected people with long Covid is unprecedented, and poses yet another Covid-19-related public health challenge.

“The observed association between multi-organ impairment and being hospitalised with Covid-19 is a cause for concern and definitely warrants more investigation."

PRACTICAL ACTION

The new centres will bring together doctors, nurses, physiotherapists and occupational therapists to offer both physical and psychological assessments.

Ten sites are already running in London, seven in the East, eight in the Midlands and nine in the South East and South West.

There are also nine in the North West and 18 across the North East and Yorkshire.

The NHS states that 12 more sites will launch in January in Cornwall, the East Midlands, the Isle of Wight and Lancashire.

The National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) has now also issued guidance at how best to rehabilitate patients with long Covid.

Sir Simon Stevens, NHS chief executive, said: “The NHS is taking practical action to help patients suffering ongoing health issues as a result of coronavirus.

THE 69 LONG COVID CLINICS IN ENGLAND

Patients suffering with symptoms of long Covid could be referred to the below sites.

  1. Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  2. Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust
  3. Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust -Berkshire Long Covid Integrated Service
  4. Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust
  5. Virgin Care Services Limited & Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust
  6. Berkshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust
  7. Royal Surrey County Hospital
  8. East Surrey and west Sussex- First Community Health & Care
  9. Community Surrey Health Surrey & Ashford & St Peter's Hospital
  10. Surrey Downs Health & Care Partnership
  11. East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust
  12. Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust
  13. East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust
  14. Milton Keynes University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
  15. Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  16. Mid and South Essex- Provide Community Interest Company.
  17. Hertfordshire Community Service Health Care Trust
  18. Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust.
  19. Norfolk Community Health and Care Trust
  20. Liverpool university Foundation Hospital Trust
  21. Manchester Foundation Trust (Manchester Royal Infirmary, Wythenshawe Hospital)
  22. North Care Alliance (Salford Royal Foundation Trust, Royal Oldham Hospital)
  23. North Manchester General
  24. Tameside & Glossop Integrated Trust
  25. Stockport NHS Foundation Trust
  26. Wrightington Wigan and Leigh Foundation Trust
  27. Bolton NHS Foundation Trust
  28. Lancashire and South Cumbria NHS foundation Trust
  29. North Cumbria Integrated Care Foundation Trust
  30. The Newcastle upon Tyne Foundation Hospitals Trust
  31. Northumbria Healthcare Foundation Trust
  32. County Durham and Darlington Foundation Trust
  33. North Tees & Hartlepool Foundation Trust
  34. South Tees Hospitals Foundation Trust
  35. York Teaching Hospital HS Foundation Trust
  36. Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust
  37. North Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Foundation Trust
  38. Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust
  39. Sheffield Teaching Hospitals Foundation Trust
  40. The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust
  41. Barnsley Healthcare Federation
  42. Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  43. Bradford Teaching hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  44. Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust
  45. The Mid Yorkshire Hospital NHS Trust
  46. Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust
  47. University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust (UHCW)
  48. Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust
  49. Shropshire Community Health Trust
  50. Birmingham Community Healthcare Trust 
  51. Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust 
  52. Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust 
  53. The Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust 
  54. Northamptonshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, Northampton General Hospital, Kettering General Hospital   
  55. University Hospitals Leicester NHS Trust and Provider Company Ltd arm of the Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland Alliance
  56. Bath, Swindon and Wiltshire -Wiltshire health and care
  57. Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire – Sirona care and Health
  58. Gloucestershire Hospitals Foundation Trust
  59. Gloucestershire health and care foundation Trust  
  60. University College London Hospital Trust (UCLH)
  61. Homerton University Hospital Foundation Trust (Homerton University Hospital)
  62. Barts Health NHS Trust, Royal London Hospital and St Bartholomew's Hospital 
  63. Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust (King George Hospital)
  64. London North West University Healthcare NHS Trust (Northwick Park Hospital)
  65. Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust (St Marys Hospital)
  66. Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Trust Chelsea and Westminster Hospital
  67. Kings Health Partners (Guys and St Thomas NHS Foundation Trust) – St Thomas Site
  68. Kings Health Partners (Kings College Health Foundation Trust) kings College Hospital
  69. St Georges NHS Trust St Georges Hospital

“Bringing expert clinicians together in these clinics will deliver an integrated approach to support patients access vital rehabilitation, as well as helping develop a greater understanding of long covid and its debilitating symptoms.”

Dr Graham Burns, clinical lead at the long covid centre at the Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle highlighted that many people didn’t recover as quickly as they had expected in the first wave.

Dr Burns added: “We had no idea what long Covid was – the world had never seen Covid-19 before. We set up the clinic in Newcastle to support patients, but it has also been invaluable in helping us understand what long Covid is.

“I’m delighted that patients now have places to turn to across the country turn and on a national scale doctors will be able to learn from our collective experience and offer tailored support to patients.”

Source: Read Full Article