The challenge

Data published by the Office for National Statistics in early 2021 indicates around 22 per cent of patients who contract COVID-19 are still suffering from at least one symptom five weeks post-diagnosis.

The Long COVID-19 Screening Service has been developed by North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust to help assess patients who may be suffering from long-term effects of infection.

The trust has digitised the COVID-19 Yorkshire Rehabilitation Scale Questionnaire which provides a comprehensive assessment of long COVID symptoms. NHS England and NICE have both recommended use of the COVID-19 Yorkshire Rehabilitation Scale in long COVID patients. Before the digital service was developed, trust staff were contacting patients and running through the assessment over the phone, which can take up to an hour to complete.

How the Long COVID-19 Screening Tool works

  • Patients who have been admitted to hospital with COVID-19 are enrolled onto the service by their clinician.
  • Patients receive a text message asking them to complete the assessment.
  • Clinicians can review the patient’s responses in the clinical portal.
  • Once reviewed the patient’s responses can be exported to the electronic patient record.

Product features

  • Drop down lists for scoring the severity of symptoms.
  • Conditional questions based on previous responses.
  • Close-ended questions but with the option for patient to provide free text to elaborate further.
  • Reporting and data extraction to help inform future service delivery.
  • Patient’s receive a text notification with a web link for them to complete.

 

Benefits

  • Frees up clinical time as staff no longer need to screen patients in a telephone call.
  • More convenient for the patient as they can complete the form at a time that’s convenient to them.
  • Uses a nationally recognised assessment which allows patients to score their symptoms.
  • Patients and staff can track progress and improvement, or deterioration in their symptoms.

 

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