In February 2023, RCPCH Scotland responded to the Scottish Parliament COVID-19 Recovery Committee’s inquiry on Long COVID in Scotland. Thank you to all of the RCPCH members who shared their feedback on the inquiry.
We concentrated on the themes of therapy and rehabilitation:
- whether there is a correct mix of services in place to help people who have long COVID
- what support could or should be available for people who are supporting or caring for people with long COVID.
Our submission highlighted that unlike some parts of the UK, Scotland does not have a specific service aimed at long COVID. We also do not have a service focussed on children and young people with chronic fatigue and pain.
RCPCH Scotland members therefore emphasised that this Inquiry presents an opportunity to discuss how we provide services to children and young people who have significant needs that may not currently be adequately met.
- We highlighted the far-reaching negative effects the pandemic has had on overall physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing of children and young people.
- We drew attention to the lack of services and referral options available for children and young people presenting with symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome.
- We recommended the creation of a service that supports children and young people with chronic fatigue or other symptoms which may be linked to viral illness. We suggested that these services should not be restricted to children and young people who have a specific diagnosis of COVID-19. Doing so would create a new inequity between children experiencing the same symptoms and having similar needs, but with differing diagnostic status.
- We also emphasised that the creation of this new type of service across Scotland would need to be appropriately resourced and staffed with multidisciplinary teams.
- When supporting people who are caring for people with long COVID, we recommended a holistic approach with the child and family at the centre. We also highlighted the importance of the multidisciplinary team in supporting families and to ensure appropriate treatment and rehab to allow young people to recover and meet their full potential.
We respond to a wide range of consultations to ensure that the College’s position, and ultimately children’s health, is represented. Members can get involved in current consultations by contacting us at: firstname.lastname@example.org