As described in a recent MedPage Today report, a growing number of patients infected with COVID-19 are experiencing “long-term and often varied consequences from the virus.” These individuals, titled “long-haulers,” are presenting with a number of serious conditions, ranging from atrial fibrillation to cognitive impairment, stemming from a COVID-19 infection. In an interview with MedPage Today, NYU Langone Rusk Rehabilitation’s Jeffrey Fine emphasizes that even those considered to live a healthy lifestyle are subject to persistent and lasting effects of the virus.
Experts cited in the MedPage Today feature say effectively caring for “long-haulers” involves a multidisciplinary approach, which may include pulmonologists, cardiologists, neurologists, rheumatologists and psychiatrists. Health systems in hard-hit regions are addressing this need with dedicated COVID-19 rehabilitation programs that serve as medical homes for those recovering “with myriad complications who require coordinated care.” According to Zijian Chen, lead Physician of Mount Sinai’s COVID-19 Recovery Program, properly treating these patients means clinicians must consider the “broad spectrum of disease,” especially given the unpredictable nature of how this virus will affect someone.
MLMLIC encourages physicians, other healthcare providers and facilities to examine the processes they have in place to provide for those patients with long term sequalae from COVID-19 infections. This may involve the need for extensive coordination of care across multiple specialties, which highlights the need for thorough and effective communication among providers.
Policyholders are advised to monitor ongoing guidance for the management and treatment of COVID-19 patients. Additionally, MLMIC has assembled a number of critical resources to support New York physicians as they care for patients during the pandemic, including:
- CDC Says Frontline Healthcare Providers with Undetected COVID-19 Infections Could be Spreading the Virus, a blog post on the prevalence of and factors associated with COVID-19 infection among frontline providers;
- CDC Says COVID-19 Can Result in Prolonged Recovery, Even Among Young Adults, a blog post on evidence that COVID-19 can result in prolonged illness, even among young adults in good health;
- New Risk Prediction Model Can Help Inform Clinical Care Decisions Related to COVID-19, a blog post on a new risk prediction model to help physicians forecast a patient’s likelihood of testing positive for COVID-19; and
- CDC Expands Criteria for Those at Higher Risk for COVID-19, a blog post on the agency’s expanded list of who is at an increased risk for getting severely ill from COVID-19; and