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Long-COVID report helps secure extra funding for Adferiad

The latest report evaluating Adferiad (recovery) services across Wales has found they continue to support people suffering from long-COVID, with patients reporting better quality of life at service discharge than at referral.

This is the fourth report from Cedar Healthcare Technology Research Centre in collaboration with Welsh Value in Health Centre (WViHC) into the long-COVID services that are available in all health board areas in Wales. The Adferiad programme aimed to introduce a new suite of patient pathways, combined with new or expanded primary and community rehabilitation services to support people with Long COVID.

The most recent findings are based on patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs) and patient-reported experience measures (PREMs). 

People using the various long-COVID services in Wales were asked questions around their general health, whether they were admitted to hospital as a result of COVID-19 and if they visited their GP due to COVID-19.  Specifically, they were also asked about their experience of the Adferiad services they used in their health board area, while providing a current snapshot of their symptoms now and their health in general.

On March 14, Eluned Morgan MS, Minister for Health and Social Services, announced an increase in funding for Adferiad services from £5m to £8.3m from April 2023, saying the extra money will help ensure equitable access.

Welsh Value in Health Centre funded the original data collection of the PROMs and PREMs, with Cedar undertaking additional data collection, data analysis and reporting to provide a fully independent evaluation of the programme. 

Dr Sally Lewis, Director of WViHC and National Clinical Lead for Value-Based and Prudent Healthcare said:  “This is a great example of PROMs and PREMs in action and the importance of collecting them and using the data, to understand in this case, how a new service or services is impacting on patients.

“The lightning speed use of PROMs and PREMs in people using the long-COVID services in Wales, enabled us all to understand the impact on those patients from having the condition, to their experiences of the services available to them. 

“Then the question is what do you do with the data you have collected? The work our colleagues at Cedar have done on evaluating it and demonstrating the impact of what the data tells us, is a major factor in contributing to the on-going funding announced by Welsh Government.

“For all NHS services in Wales, this example of Adferiad shows the value of collecting PROMs and PREMs and being able to give an evidence-based case for further funding or improved outcomes.”