Scotland’s GPs can and do help Long Covid sufferers


– Scotland’s GPs can and do help Long Covid sufferers

(Ed: TuS does not usually assume a role as a public service provider of information: it does not have for example a comparable mission to the public service broadcaster, BBC Scotland. However, we feel obliged today on one specific issue to perform a public service for the reasons that will become obvious below. We trust our regular readers will understand and support this action.)


Despite the inevitable and continuing pressures on Scotland’s health and care system due to the Coronavirus pandemic, the delivery of primary and secondary healthcare continues to function effectively. Those with health issues – Covid-related or not – will find care and expertise available to them within all parts of NHS Scotland.

Regrettably, reassurance of this kind may be necessary for those concerned with the health condition known as Long Covid following the appearance – now over two successive days – of an article on the Scotland page of the BBC News website that contains the following statement:

“I don’t want to give patients false expectations that they can come to their GP and we can send them somewhere – there is nowhere for us to send them to.”

(Source: )

This stark claim is especially notable – and might be taken seriously and at face value – because it is made not by a journalist but by a healthcare professional, a General Practitioner.

The GP in question is Dr. Sandesh Gulhane. His remark was made during a BBC Radio Scotland prime time interview  – on Good Morning Scotland – before being amplified through the BBC News website.

The GP’s remarks quoted above clearly seeks to imply that a patient in Scotland coming to their GP with concerns about Long Covid would be unable to access further, more specialist sources of treatment even if the patient’s GP felt this was necessary.  It is the carefully considered view of TuS that this claim needs to challenged in the strongest possible terms and reassurance given to those who may be worried by its implications.

Dr Gulhane’s is a bold statement. At TuS we are not medics but based on all the information we have, his claim is wrong. GPs in Scotland continue to have access to a wide range of specialist services in community and hospital settings. For an individual GP to make such an unequivocal statement is alarmist and it risks discouraging sufferers from seeking diagnosis and treatment from their GP.  Candidly, this rhetoric is unprofessional.

It is doubly disappointing to learn that the GP, Dr Gulhane making this alarmist claim is a Scottish Conservative MSP.

We would strongly advise Dr Gulhane as an MSP – and especially one who seems to make much of his own professional credentials in public pronouncements – to argue the Tory case for health policy or operational/delivery changes with greater candour and without recourse to alarmist statements.

BBC Scotland should take more care before amplifying unfounded alarmist statements.

And finally, we strongly advise those considering a visit to their GP on potentially Covid-related chronic ailments to do so confidently: do not be put off by the inappropriate, alarmist rhetoric of a Tory politician!

This ends the public information statement from Talking up Scotland!


17 thoughts on “Scotland’s GPs can and do help Long Covid sufferers

  1. I see the same Dr is looking for a research officer to work for him part time 4 days a week Salary £35,182-£44,643 (pro-rata)

    Fancy applying John just for a laugh??????????????

    Liked by 2 people

  2. For the first time since the pandemic started I had a need to see my GP. Since the NHS began in 1948, the practice with which I have been registered since that time has always operated a walk in service. Because of the epidemic, a different system is in place. On Monday I phoned the surgery to indicate I wished to speak to one of the Doctors. Less than 2 hours later I was phoned, we discussed the issue and I emailed a photograph (it was a skin problem). On Tuesday, I was phoned to say that the GP would see me face to face at a specified time on Wednesday and that this would be at a surgery which is actually closer to my home. On Wednesday, I was examined and an appointment made for the Dermatology Clinic.

    Liked by 7 people

    1. GP service continued: Having seen my GP two days ago, as described above, I received a phone call while I was having breakfast this morning. It was the dermatology clinic offering me an appointment between 9.30 and 11.30am next Tuesday.

      Do you think Reporting Scotland will be interested in my story?


  3. Well done John, but most surprised you did not link to the earlier “EXPOSED: Wife of Tory MSP covertly allowed to attack SNP on made-up GP ‘crisis’ ” spurred by the
    “Krishan is the wife of Tory MSP, and John Beattie chum, Dr Sandesh Gulhane” comment…
    It all stinks of a Tory or SiU campaign, with the BBC wafting it to the public…

    Liked by 5 people

  4. “I reject a “snack tax, on personal grounds.
    I would shrink away to grossly obese, if I couldn’t have my nibbles”!

    “On levelling up”.
    “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses, and me and Priti will send them North where they belong.
    Poor in the North, Oligarchs in the South; looks level to me”!

    “A journalist, you say? I’ll give you his address if you want to give him a good seeing to”!

    Liked by 5 people

      1. ‘Scotlands test and trace system suggesting it is failing’ – seemingly not the view of of the Academy of Medical Sciences, the UK body representing the diversity of medical science?

        From its latest report on Covid matters entitled: ‘COVID-19: Preparing for the future – Looking ahead to winter 2021/22 and beyond’ published 15 July 2021 ( ) I just spotted this.

        Regarding opportunities to learn from EXAMPLES OF GOOD PRACTICE across the UK, the Academy identifies Scotland’s practice:

        “For example, the Scottish contact tracing model is delivered by health protection professionals in teams in local NHS Boards with surge capacity provided through the National Contact Tracing Centre operated by NHS National Services Scotland (NSS). Scripts, guidance, digital systems and training resources to support contact tracing are developed centrally through Public Health Scotland, ensuring best use of resource and consistency of practice across Scotland. A similar system operates in Wales under Public Health Wales.”

        Liked by 3 people

      2. Indeed the HMG sourced “quickie” tests from China on which so much relies (including Scotland) have become highly suspect, far lower than the confidence levels Phillipa Whitford outlined early on.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Of course, it would help if we could hold the BBC to account, but they are above the law, apparently. I hope they are aware though, that just because Westminster chooses to ignore international law, this does not protect them from legal consequences. Scots law has just incorporated class actions, so all we need is someone competent in tort law and such to take them to task.


  6. What with this and the Murdo Fraser incident, isn’t it time something was put in place so that MSPs could be disciplined for their actions outside parliament?

    What? Don’t ask me! But surely something could be done. I’d favour suspension from parliament with no pay. The money to be either:
    a) put into a SG poverty/emergency fund
    b) donated to the other political parties’ funds, split by number of (possibly elected?) SMPs

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Disgraceful conduct by a Tory MSP. He is undermining the excellent work of Scotland’s NHS in order to score political points, very unprofessional imo. Is he denying that Scotland has no help or support available for people who are I’ll? A big claim, if that’s what he is implying.


  8. I contracted Covid-19 in late January 2020 – sorry, I seem to have brought it back from Australia with me 😦 . Of course, I couldn’t be tested – there were no tests. My Covid-19 morphed into Long Covid and I was infected a second time in September.

    Nevertheless, my GP has cared for me since that time. She treated each symptom, wrote prescriptions and made referrals where appropriate. I have never felt abandoned with my issues and I am grateful for the high level of care that I have received.

    I am sorry for Dr Gulhane’s patients since he is clearly not as caring and resourceful as my GP. He is the fly in the ointment


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