Coronavirus aftercare must be ‘scaled up’ to prevent future hospitalisations, charity warns

Aftercare for Covid-19 patients must be “scaled up” to prevent more hospitalisations later in the year, a charity has warned. 

Patients who have recovered from the coronavirus have continued to suffer from breathing difficulties, as well as extreme fatigue and even PTSD, Asthma UK and the British Lung Foundation has said.

The NHS is currently developing an aftercare pathway for patients discharged from hospital and recovering from coronavirus, which is yet to be published. 

The guidance is expected to detail the transfer of patients recovering from Covid-19 from intensive care units (ICU) to rehabilitation facilities.

In the meantime, Asthma UK and the British Lung Foundation has launched an online hub for patients with advice and support, as well as a hotline which it hopes may reduce pressure on the already stretched NHS 111. 

Kay Boycott, chief executive of Asthma UK and the British Lung Foundation, said patients have already reported lasting breathing problems to the hub, which was launched earlier this month. 

“You may have been discharged following Covid, but you may still have some symptoms,” she said.

“You may still have some breathlessness, and feel quite alone and quite scared.”

Ms Boycott said some patients have also reported symptoms of “depression, anxiety, or even post traumatic stress disorder”.

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