Health Services (Impact of Long Covid)

– in the Scottish Parliament at on 4 February 2021.

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Photo of Angus MacDonald Angus MacDonald Scottish National Party

5. To ask the Scottish Government what research has been undertaken regarding the long-term impact of long Covid on Scotland’s health services, and whether it is considering establishing long Covid clinics. (S5O-04973)

Photo of Jeane Freeman Jeane Freeman Scottish National Party

Rehabilitation, clinical input and research are all critical aspects of our recovery from the impacts of Covid.

We are prioritising three main areas: delivery of a framework for supporting people through recovery and rehabilitation; establishment of a living clinical guideline for healthcare professionals, which is directly helpful to general practitioners and clinicians in identifying on-going symptoms and provides a definition of best practice; and, through our chief scientist office, we have directly funded four rapid research projects at Scottish universities to consider such impacts, particularly in lung health but also in other areas.

Photo of Angus MacDonald Angus MacDonald Scottish National Party

I thank the cabinet secretary for her detailed reply. Since lodging my question I have had an opportunity to discuss the issue with the chief executive of NHS Forth Valley. Given her response, and that of the cabinet secretary, I am satisfied that the issue is in hand both locally and nationally. Unless the cabinet secretary wishes to respond further, Presiding Officer, I am content for you to move on.

The Deputy Presiding Officer:

That is very kind of you, Mr MacDonald.

Would Jeane Freeman like to give a quick response?

Photo of Jeane Freeman Jeane Freeman Scottish National Party

I thank Mr MacDonald very much. I will say two quick things. This is a developing area of research and understanding, so although we have put in place a number of measures, we continue to look at what more we need to do, as understanding of what long Covid involves grows, particularly in relation to people who suffer from it.