CSP tells Covid inquiry: 'We weren’t sitting silent… [but] sometimes it felt like shouting into a void'

Providing evidence to the Scottish Covid-19 inquiry, the CSP outlined key lessons for the future.

Claire Ronald, CSP senior negotiating officer, at the Scottish Covid-19 inquiry.  Session starts at 1 hour 25 minutes

CSP senior negotiating officer for Scotland Claire Ronald gave evidence to the  Scottish Covid-19 inquiry on 25 April.

Claire outlined the contribution of the profession during the peak of the pandemic, but also how members were let down over crucial issues - with back-and-forth over the definition of aerosol generating procedures leading to physios not being afforded the highest level of personal protective equipment.

The inquiry took a positive, forwarding-looking approach, seeking to identify lessons for now and the future.

Here, Claire argued the restoration of rehab spaces – and improved workforce planning & and supply – is needed today to cope with the population’s unmet rehabilitation needs.  

You need to have that investment in rehabilitation and have it meaningful.  

'You’re not going to get patients out of hospital unless you’re… returning as much mobility and function as possible. That’s where physiotherapy is key, and where our rehab spaces are key.'

Claire also argued that improved partnership working – with clearer and more consistent input of trade union and professional bodies into decision making processes - would benefit members and patients in any future pandemic.

'There’s scope to involve us in multiple ways. Trade union channels should have been open to us… where we’re talking about terms and conditions, and then talking about professional issues like PPE its about having the right roots for joint communication.'

The CSP's evidence received considerable media attention, with the Scotsman, Scottish Times, and Herald - among others - covering our evidence of how pandemic decision-making was continuing to have a knock-on effect on patients' recovery.

The Scottish Covid-19 inquiry is an independent public inquiry examining how Scotland responded to the pandemic.  It is running in parallel to the UK Covid-19 inquiry, with a memorandum of understanding agreed to link the two.

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