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SUFFERING: 12,800 people in Leeds could be suffering from long Covid

SUFFERING: 12,800 people in Leeds could be suffering from long Covid

Image: LDRS

Nearly 13,000 people in Leeds were suffering from so-called “long Covid” symptoms last month, a council report has estimated.

Leeds City Council’s health scrutiny board is set to meet next week to discuss a report into the effects of post-Covid syndrome, and what has been done to help those suffering.

The condition, also known as long Covid, refers to symptoms lasting for more than four weeks after the first infection and are not explained by something else. The most common symptoms include fatigue, ongoing shortness of breath, muscle and chest pains, ‘brain fog’ and anxiety. Symptoms can fluctuate over weeks so individuals can seem to be getting better, then get worse again.

The office for National Statistics (ONS) estimates that around 1.5 per cent of the UK population were suffering from long Covid on August 1. The Leeds City Council report stated that “this equates to 12,807 people in Leeds.”

It added: “Long Covid is more commonly reported among people aged 35 to 69 years, females, people from more deprived areas, those with pre-existing health conditions and among health and social care workers.

“Some of this difference might be because some groups have had a higher chance of getting an initial Covid infection. Also to note that many people reporting Long Covid had no pre-existing health problems.”

The Leeds Long Covid Community Services Pathway was formed as a collaboration between the NHS Leeds Clinical Commissioning Group, Leeds University, Leeds City Council and NHS service providers, in response to the first wave of Covid infections in the early spring of 2020.

The report stated the service had received its highest number of referrals for “Covid rehab” in March this year, and that a large majority of those suffering were women, with those in their 40s and 50s seemingly most at risk.

Members of the council’s Adults, Health and Active Lifestyles Scrutiny Board will meet to discuss the report on Tuesday, October 5.

 

Words: Richard Beecham, Local Democracy Reporter


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