Your Covid Recovery

What factors influence recovery? That’s the question we posed at the end of an article in August 2020 which looked at the launch of a study into the long term effects of Covid-19. Those effects can be many and varied depending on the individual as well as the severity of their initial symptoms and treatment required. For example, Long-Covid has been recognised as affecting a proportion of individuals whilst others, particularly if they have been sedated in intensive care, may well have not only physical but also psychological and emotional recovery needs.

With this in mind a new online platform has been deployed by the NHS with a view to helping health professionals to support those who are recovering from the long-term effects of Covid-19. The platform, entitled Your Covid Recovery (YCR), aims to deliver help and guidance to those affected by Covid in two ways.

Firstly, a publicly accessible website provides a suite of information not only for patients but also for family, friends, and carers. Starting by a look at what Covid-19 actually is, the site goes on to examine how the disease affects people before providing guidance on recovery pathways. Helpfully this not only delivers a broad brush approach to areas such as the return home from hospital but also dives into specific Covid related conditions.

For example, under the section on taste and smell the site makes suggestions such as experimenting with different flavours and textures, keeping your mouth clean, and using herbs and spices or marinades to overcome metallic tastes. Similarly, the area looking at musculoskeletal, shoulder and back pain suggests some strength and flexibility exercises to aid recovery. This section also provides advice on when individuals should contact their doctor or physiotherapist for additional support.

The other arm of the Your Covid Recovery platform is dedicated to patients with post-Covid syndrome. Access to this area of the platform requires a specific referral following a face to face assessment from a healthcare professional.

Once accepted on to this programme individuals can log in with a dedicated pass-code, track their symptoms, set their own goals and access interactive rehabilitation components which are specific to those goals. Supervision will be provided by dedicated clinicians whilst chat forums will enable patients to network with others who are facing similar challenges.

The Your Covid Recovery platform has been designed by a coalition of health professionals and bodies including the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, the British Lung Foundation/Asthma UK, the British Psychological Society, and the Association of Chartered Physiotherapists in Respiratory Care. Launching the platform Chartered Society of Physiotherapy CEO Karen Middleton said “The CSP is proud of its role in developing this tailored, rehabilitation platform specifically for post-Covid patients. It could help thousands of people to chart and self-manage their conditions at home.”

However she went on to counsel that “We must also not forget the huge, unmet rehabilitation needs of non-Covid patients coping with a variety of long-term conditions and we must tackle the health inequalities that Covid-19 has laid bare.”