Path to be put in place
Now, the Quebec health system will have to work to establish a path of care for patients with COVID-19.
The UK has developed an interesting model, based on a multidisciplinary track. We’d better get inspired by what they did. Because prolonged COVID is definitely an emerging problem. “
At the start of the epidemic, all research efforts were focused on treating severe COVID, which leads patients who use ventilators to intensive care.
Today, the pendulum is starting to move and efforts are beginning to be made to treat COVID in the long term.
“We need to develop knowledge to find out why some people get severe COVID and others don’t,” insists Dr.s Biche.
“The results of the first research will start appearing in six to 12 months. It encourages patients to know that there is research going on,” he says.
Currently, many patients find themselves unanswered, even when they have the opportunity to go to the mobile post-COVID clinic in CIUSSS de l’Estrie-CHUS.
“When I meet patients, the first question they ask me is: How long will it last? I do not have an answer to this question, because it varies from person to person, and from symptoms to another, and its severity varies over time. For example, we see people who feel For a few days, they think it takes a good advantage, and then it starts over, ”notes the microbiologist and infectious disease specialist.
Before COVID-19, could people who were very sick with another virus like influenza, for example, also have persistent symptoms?
You can sometimes see it with the flu or with a virus like mononucleosis, but with COVID, 20 to 30% of people have persistent symptoms. It really is unique to COVID. Certainly, COVID leads to something other viruses do not do, ”says the doctor.
Meanwhile, Dr.s Piché is developing Sherbrooke’s post-COVID mobile clinic.
“I am still working on developing multidisciplinary services. I hope the Ministry of Health provides us with financial resources,” says the person who takes over a good part of patient care through his guards at the hospital.
At present, it is not easy to treat these patients because there are a lot of checks to be done. Most of the time, the test results will return to normal. For example, we don’t see anything in the pictures that could explain the shortness of breath. It might also be because we don’t yet know what we’re looking for. One day, we will thus have to ask ourselves if we should have all of these tests done since they are normal … definitely not. But we haven’t gotten there yet, because we have yet to try to understand the mechanisms that have been affected in the long COVID context, ” concludes Dr.s Biche.