NHS to launch online COVID-19 rehab service

A new online COVID-19 rehab service is to launch for people who are suffering long-term effects of coronavirus.

The platform will provide on-demand access to nurses and physiotherapists, either online or via telephone.

The ‘Your COVID Recovery’ is aimed at those who have survived the virus but still have problems with breathing, mental health problems or other complications.

The news follows the building of a new Seacole rehabilitation centre to help those most seriously affected by COVID-19, with similar facilities expected to open across the country.

Following an initial assessment, a 12 week programme will be available for those that need it, including:

  • Access to a local clinical team including nurses and physiotherapists who can respond either online or over the phone to any enquiries from patients;
  • An online peer-support community for survivors – particularly helpful for those who may be recovering at home alone;
  • Exercise tutorials that people can do from home to help them regain muscle strength and lung function in particular, and;
  • Mental health support, which may include a psychologist within the online hub or referral into NHS mental health services along with information on what to expect post-COVID.

Sir Simon Stevens said: “Rolling out Your COVID Recovery, alongside expanding and strengthening community health and care services, is another example of how the NHS must bring the old and the new together to create better and more convenient services for patients.”

The first phase of the service will launch later this month, providing the latest advice on recovering from the virus, which will be available to all and continually improved and added to.

The second phase, in which people who need it will be able to access personalised support packages, is in development by experts based in Leicester and will be made available later in the summer.

Professor Singh from the University of Leicester said: “We know the impact of COVID on people can be far reaching and complex, ‘Your COVID Recovery’ is specifically designed to support people in their recovery post-coronavirus, this will be one of the first sites in the world rolled out nationally seeking to address potential post-COVID symptoms and support people on the road to recovery.”

“We have brought together a wide range of experts representing a number of professional societies who have made valuable contributions to the site, to allow us to have a comprehensive package of information and advice. Importantly we have worked with people with first-hand experience of COVID to help shape the site and make sure the content was fit for purpose.”