Telehealth clinic addresses COVID-19 survivors' needs

July 7, 2020

Telehealth clinic addresses COVID-19 survivors' needs

You might have seen videos of COVID-19 survivors leaving intensive-care units, to applause and cheers, but that's not the end of patients' fight.  The recovery journey can be long. 

Dr. Aaron Bunnell, assistant professor of rehabilitation medicine at the University of Washington School of Medicine, explains that a COVID-19 infection can have lingering effects on breathing, endurance, physical functioning, memory, attention, and mental health.  That's why UW Medicine has created a post-COVID telehealth clinic to help address those needs in a comprehensive way.

"The advantage of telehealth is you’re seeing the person, you’re seeing the environment," he says. "I think there’s also a human component, so when I’m asking you questions about your mood or whether you’re having flashbacks to the ICU, it’s just better to be able to look someone in the eye and ask those questions."

The telehealth visits are also a gateway to other patient resources such as social work and occupational therapy. Patients discharged from Harborview Medical Center and UW Medical Center (Montlake and Northwest campuses) are referred to the program.

Credit: 
@natabene via Twenty20
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