Support available at Long COVID clinics must reflect the wide variety of symptoms


  • 18th December 2020

Today the NHS has announced that there are 69 Long COVID clinics now operating across England, with patients able to access these services by referral through a GP or another healthcare professional.[1]

The clinics form part of the NHS’s five-point package to support Long COVID patients, aimed at providing multi-professional advice and support to help ensure people are put onto the right clinical pathway to treat their symptoms.[2] Patient Safety Learning welcomes today’s publication of the location of these new clinics in England, which we initially called for in September.[3]

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), the Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network (SIGN) and the Royal College of General Practitioners have also published today a new guideline for identification, assessment and management of Long COVID.[4] As a stakeholder in the taskforce advising NHS England and NHS Improvement on support for patients living with Long COVID we fed back the concerns that patients have been sharing with us as part of the consultation process on this guideline.

Patient Safety Learning believes that the NHS needs to put in place a broad plan for engaging and communicating with Long COVID patients. In a recent blog on this we suggested several actions concerning Long COVID clinics where we felt it would be beneficial for the NHS to provide greater clarity on their plans.[5] In addition to publishing a list of the initial set of clinics, we believe the NHS should share a more specific timeframe for the completed roll-out of all the intended clinics.

We also believe that clarity is now needed from the devolved healthcare systems in Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales on plans for similar services, to avoid a postcode lottery emerging for Long COVID patients in different parts of the United Kingdom.[6]

Commenting on today’s news, Patient Safety Learning’s Chief Executive Helen Hughes said:

“We welcome today’s update on Long COVID clinics and the publication of new guidance on managing this for healthcare practitioners. We believe it is important that these clinics provide access to the specialist support needed, as patients can present with a variety of symptoms.
We feel that there needs to be significant improvement in how the NHS engages and communicates with people living with Long COVID. This should include information about the roll-out of support in all areas of the UK and an increase in patient resources”.

Your views and experiences

If you’re accessing services via one of these Long COVID clinics, or if you have specific views about the newly issued guidance, please do let us know your thoughts on our patient safety platform the hub.

Appendix – List of Long COVID clinics published today

  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 and 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 and Care
  9. Community Surrey Health Surrey and Ashford and St Peter’s Hospital
  10. Surrey Downs Health and 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 and 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 and 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

[1] NHS England and NHS Improvement, Long COVID patients to get help at more than 60 clinics, 18 December 2020.

[2] Patient Safety Learning, NHS announces five-point package to support Long Covid patients, 7 October 2020.

[3] Patient Safety Learning, Patient Safety learning calls for the NHS to publish details of post-COVID clinics, 11 September 2020.

[4] NICE, COVID-19 rapid guideline: managing the long-term effects of COVID-19, 18 December 2020.

[5] Patient Safety Learning, Clear NHS plan needed to reassure Long COVID patients, 19 November 2020.

[6] BBC News, Coronavirus: Call to help those suffering from long COVID, 18 November 2020., BBC News, Covid in Scotland: No clinics for thousands of ‘long Covid’ patients, 11 November 2020., BBC News, Long Covid: Calls for specialist clinics in Wales, 11 November 2020.



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