Long COVID Joint Research Forum
Currently very little is known about the clinical, biological, psychological and socio-environmental impact of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). While most people may have uncomplicated recoveries, some experience prolonged or new symptoms and complications.
The wide range of Long Covid symptoms documented indicates that multiple body systems are involved. Some of the more commonly reported symptoms include fatigue, breathing difficulties, joint pain, chest pain, as well as muscle weakness and neurological symptoms. These are common among both people who were hospitalised in the early phase of COVID-19 and those who were not. Systematic reviews show that people worldwide are experiencing prolonged symptoms of COVID-19. There are implications at an individual level for people’s quality of life and their ability to work, as well as at a socioeconomic level due to the risk of widening health inequalities. As well as breadth of the physical, psychological and social complications, there is a need to understand the causes (aetiology) of the symptoms and complications experienced. It is also vital to be able to identify people at higher risk of Long Covid, as well as interventions that might reduce that risk, and support rehabilitation and recovery. There is an urgent need for robust scientific studies into the long-term impact of COVID-19 in both adults and children, and for healthcare providers to be informed to support prevention, assessment, rehabilitation and interventions to improve recovery and patient outcomes. With this need in mind, ISARIC and GloPID-R organized the Long Covid Forum on December 9 & 10, 2020 in collaboration with the Long Covid Support. The objectives of the forum were:
- to gain a better understanding of Long Covid; the science and the personal impact
- to define research gaps for funders and researchers to take forward
Research priorities for Long Covid: refined through an international multi-stakeholder forum
Gail Carson and Long Covid Forum Group BMC Medicine 31 March 2021 Read the publication
Speakers & Participants
The speakers and participants were from the research community, patient groups, research funders, policy makers and public health representatives.
The 2-day virtual event discussed 7 topics and was introduced by Peter Horby, Executive Director of ISARIC and Charu Kaushic, Chair of GloPID-R and Margaret O’Hara, founder of the Long COVID support Group. The topics discussed included:
- Global Patients’ Voice
- Overarching summary of the knowledge/science of Long COVID
- What do we know about Long COVID from country experiences?
- Reflecting on Chikungunya
- On-going Long COVID studies
- On-going Long COVID studies & mental health
- Panel discussion & research gaps
The event concluded with a panel discussion and exchange on the next steps.