Mental health impact on Notts Long Covid patients
A health watchdog has found 75 per cent of people in Nottinghamshire with long Covid reported negative impacts on their mental health.
A new report by Healthwatch Nottingham & Nottinghamshire found about half were struggling to access treatment, with some receiving no support at all.
And a third reported feelings of anxiety and fear of going out or mixing with people in case they catch coronavirus again.
In March 2021, HNN surveyed 37 people, who experienced ongoing Covid symptoms for three months or more and had tried to use services within Nottingham and Nottinghamshire.
The report showed an almost 50-50 split on services such as 999, NHS 111 and GPs, with just under half of all respondents saying they did not get the support they needed, and just under half saying they did.
About one in 10 people cited misdiagnosis, getting conflicting or limited information, or not being taken seriously.
The survey found three-quarters people believed long Covid had impacted their mental health and wellbeing, with more than a third saying they had anxiety and were afraid to go out.
About one in 10 people said they were left feeling emotional, frustrated and depressed due to the symptoms they were still experiencing; not receiving the treatment and care they needed, and not being able to do everyday activities.
According to research published in July 2021, two million people in England may have had long Covid.
Symptoms mentioned by people with long Covid included achy limbs, headaches, and dizziness, cough, reduced appetite, hair loss, poor mobility, insomnia, and rash.
Sarah Collis, HNN chairman, said: “Long Covid is a new, complex, and relatively unknown syndrome affecting a significant number of people in terms of their physical and mental health and wellbeing.
“While a clearer picture of the long-term effects of Covid is starting to emerge, it is evident from the responses we have received from people who have or continue to, experience long Covid, that more knowledge and awareness needs to be made available.”
The Healthwatch report has been shared with providers and commissioners and will be used to inform the development of a new ‘long Covid pathway’.
To download the report, visit hwnn.co.uk or call Healthwatch on 0115 956 5313.