Long Covid: two new specialist NHS hubs for children to be set up in the North West

The Long Covid hubs will be open to young adults and children who are still struggling with the long-term after effects of the virus. Credit: PA

The NHS is to launch Long Covid services for children and young people in England, with two new  paediatric hubs in the North West.

While children are less likely to suffer the severe effects of Covid-19, some have suffered long-term after effects.

Now the health service in England has announced that it is to launch 15 paediatric hubs around the UK to help families and GPs.

There will be two hubs in the North West: one at Alder Hey Children’s NHS Foundation Trust in Liverpool and one at Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital.

The hubs will draw together experts on common symptoms such as respiratory problems and fatigue who can directly treat youngsters, advise family doctors or others caring for them or refer them into other specialist services and clinics, the NHS in England said.

More than one million people have reported suffering from Long Covid, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

Cara, 15, from Chester, had COVID-19 in March 2020 and was eventually referred to the Long Covid clinic at Alder Hey.

Her Mum Margo said: "She suffered from a whole host of symptoms, the main ones being chronic fatigue, debilitating crushing headaches and excruciating stomach pain.

" This is a very difficult journey and people need support. It's made me aware of how many children and adults have lost their favourite sports and passions.

"Thank you to Alder Hey Long Covid Clinic for all their advice, encouragement and support. Cara is starting to slowly rebuild and re-piece her life together. She is lucky to be able to do that and we're so thankful for all the wonderful people who are supporting her.”

ONS data suggests that 7.4% of children aged two to 11 and 8.2% of those aged 12-16 report continued symptoms.

The new Long Covid hubs for children are to be announced by NHS chief executive Sir Simon Stevens.