NHS staff with Long Covid: Information needed

Today is 1st September which means that NHS staff with Long Covid in England and Scotland are no longer receiving Covid sick pay or on amended terms and conditions. Staff in Wales have been in this position since 1st July. This is not good enough. Our NHS heroes are effectively being abandoned through no fault of their own.

I am so incensed about the changes that I am writing this blog even though Long Covid Nurses and Midwives UK (@LCNMUK) is taking a social media break until later this month. Roger Kline (@rogerkline) summed up the situation in his blog for Evidence Based Nursing in July 2022. He called for 10 things to happen.

At the same time as Roger’s blog was published, in just over a week, more than 40K people signed a petition asking for covid sick pay to be reinstated for NHS staff. This suggests that a significant proportion of the public do not believe that our NHS heroes should be facing losing their jobs alongside financial destitution.

NHS staff with Long Covid were asked by Long Covid Nurses and Midwives (@LCNMUK) and Long Covid Support (@long_covid) how they felt about this. The results can be seen in Figures 1-2.

Figure 1: How the changes to covid sick pay made NHS staff with Long Covid feel
Figure 2: Impact of changes to covid sick pay on NHS staff with Long Covid

Some of us are working hard behind the scenes to support NHS staff in this situation and we need their help. (Please note any information you provide may be used anonymously on social media and in blogs.) I am presenting a short paper at the HSJ Patient Safety Congress in a couple of weeks.

I would like to hear the stories of those who have returned to work successfully and also those who attempted a return to work but did not have the necessary support to do so.

  • The stories of frontline NHS staff affected by Long Covid and how it impacts on their ability to carry out their daily roles safely.
  • What messages would you give to managers supporting people with Long Covid back to work?
  • What helps support a successful return to work?
  • Which factors hinder a successful return to work?

Please post your experiences and thoughts here.

Roger is planning on writing another blog but needs to know:

  1. About whether your employer reported your workplace Covid-19 infection on RIDDOR. https://padlet.com/atwycross/gnes7p86uinnvf0c
  • About your experience with phased returns. Is your employer facilitating a bespoke extended phased return? How long a phased return have you been able to negotiate? Was the phased return on full pay? https://padlet.com/atwycross/7x6g6wj0w31ihm37

Clare Rayner (@ClareRayner6), Jenny Ceolta-Smith (@JCeoltaSmith) and I met yesterday. Keep an eye on social media to see what other things we are putting in place to try and support people with Long Covid at this horrendously difficult time.

Alison Twycross (@alitwy)

Chair: Long Covid Nurses and Midwives UK

Author: Alison Twycross PhD RN

Chair - Supporting Healthcare Heroes UK; Editor-in-Chief - Evidence Based Nursing; Former Deputy Dean and Professor of Children’s Nursing

2 thoughts on “NHS staff with Long Covid: Information needed

  1. I haven’t been able to return to work yet as too unwell.
    Had absence management policy implemented 3 months into sickness and against nhs guidance

    RCN very unhelpful

    Feel unvalued by my trust and especially my manager

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