The first phase, which will examine the outcomes to be measured, will be completed over the next few months. The second phase will be completed by 2022.
On Thursday, the coordinated international effort to collect standardised data about Long Covid marked a significant step in the quest to uncover the secrets behind Long Covid.
The World Health Organization announced a joint project with the International Severe Acute Respiratory & Emerging Infection Consortium to create a core outcome set (COS). This will help to build a better picture of post-Covid conditions.
ISARIC stated that Long Covid, one of the less understood parts of the pandemic, was an emerging global healthcare crisis.
We don’t know why some people struggle to recover after the acute phase of infection. They may experience ongoing shortness of breath and extreme fatigue, brain fog, and other neurological and cardiac disorders.
Despite a “significant portion” of COVID-19 cases going on to suffer from Long Covid, “the evidence for this condition is limited and based on small patient cohorts with short-term follow-up,” ISARIC said.
“A COS is urgently needed to standardise and optimise clinical data collection across studies (especially clinical trials) and clinical practice.
The statement stated that an international group of post-Covid and COS experts had created a research program alongside the WHO and ISARIC.
The Post-Covid Core Outcomes project will begin with a survey of Long Covid patients.
The first phase will be completed within the next few months to examine what outcomes should be measured. The second phase will be completed by 2022 and will address how to measure these outcomes.
According to a tally from official sources compiled by AFP, nearly 205 million coronavirus cases have been registered since the outbreak emerged in China in December 2019.
While the true number, which includes unrecorded cases of Long Covid, will be much higher, it is still unknown how many people are suffering from Long Covid.
Last week, the WHO stated that it was working with Long Covid sufferers to develop better rehabilitation programs.
This year, the organisation held a series of seminars to increase understanding of post-Covid conditions. They heard directly from sufferers as well as doctors and scientists.
Janet Diaz, WHO’s expert on Long Covid, stated that there were more than 200 symptoms last week.
Diaz stated that some patients experienced symptoms that continued beyond the acute phase. Others got better but then relapsed. Some had conditions that could come back or go. Other patients suffered symptoms that appeared only after the acute phase.
Some patients experience symptoms that last for up to nine months.