QEH King's Lynn first in UK to take part in vital long covid research
The Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Lynn is the first hospital in the country to take part in a crucial long Covid trial.
Medical director of the hospital, Frankie Swords, said on social media: “Little old Lynn are the first site in the UK to launch this vital long Covid study. Huge congratulations and thanks to all.”
The trial called Heal-Covid aims to identify treatment that will help patients recover once they have been discharged from the hospital after recovering from covid.
Statistics suggest that more than one in five go on to develop new or more serious symptoms associated with long covid often involving their heart, lungs and circulation.
The hospital has launched an urgent public health clinical trial of national importance.
Research and development lead Olawale Olanrewaju has said:”Staff were already discussing long Covid and the need for a study when they heard about the Heal research.”
As well as physical symptoms, the team will also focus on mental health issues.
Mr Olanrewaju has said:” The study would eventually be rolled out into the community, to recruit people who had suffered milder Covid symptoms which did not require hospital admission.”
Patients will take part in surveys on their smart devices as part of the trial along with a research nurse, who will log their answers regarding their daily life and how they manage tasks after suffering from long covid.
Heal, who are pioneering the trial have said: “”We do not yet know which treatments are best to prevent and treat the increased death and disability occurring in some people with Covid after their discharge from hospital. There are several commonly used medicines that might help, but we do not know yet how well they work, or which treatments are the best. “
According to the ONS, as of March 1.1 million people in the UK are suffering from long Covid.
Some are wheelchair bound and have suffered a myriad of symptoms for an excess of nine months.
For Michael Hobbs, a 49-year-old Fakenham bus driver, coronavirus has turned into a living nightmare.
Despite the best efforts of the hardworking medics at Lynn’s Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Mr Hobbs’ life has changed completely since having Covid-19 and he still isn’t able to use his voice properly.
He said: “I was then induced into a coma and put on a ventilator. They didn’t think I was going to make it.”
Mr Hobbs was on ventilation to keep him alive and upon discharge had to contend with life with long covid.
He said: “Coming home has had it’s own set of challenges. I still can’t walk properly and can’t go to work.”