Long Covid: Rehabilitation services for local patients

long covid image

Post Covid 

The number of people with Covid-19 symptoms that are lasting more than four weeks after first being diagnosed is increasing, so we are making sure we can provide the information that patients, their family and friends need.

Patients living in Havering, Barking and Dagenham, Redbridge and Waltham Forrest who are experiencing symptoms such as breathlessness, fatigue and “brain fog” (feeling confused or unable to cope) will benefit from a range of support services which are now available.

If a patient is between four and 12 weeks they can refer to the information available in the ‘further information’ sections below or speak to their GP. 

Long Covid 

Long covid refers to people with Covid-19 symptoms that are lasting more than 12 weeks after first being diagnosed. 

Locally, this work has been developed with our hospital providers (Barts Health and Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospital Trust (BHRUT)), our community health provider (North East London Foundation Trust (NELFT), our GPs and commissioners representing each local area across our boroughs.
These services will work across GP’s, hospitals and community services and will include:

  • Initial assessment and screening by GP’s to get a better understanding of their symptoms and check nothing else is causing them 
  • Specialist clinics with professionals involved
  • All referrals will be reviewed by a specialist
  • Community based rehabilitation service with patient’s being seen locally which will offer:
    • patient centred rehabilitation
    • support in dealing with long covid emotionally and mentally as well as physically
    • Access to extra support based in communities for help with things such as finances and supporting healthy lifestyles and the recovery journey
    • Access to NHS apps to help patients to help themselves

The aim is that people suffering from Long Covid have access to the appropriate support they need to help them to recover fully.  People from the following areas can access the services: Barking & Dagenham, Havering and Redbridge (joint service at King George and in the community).

Waltham Forest 

Patients need to be referred into our services by their GP. 

For more information on long covid and national support available, visit https://www.post-covid.org.uk/ and https://www.yourcovidrecovery.nhs.uk/  

Further Information

National resources

Helps patients to understand what has happened and what they might expect as part of their recovery. Has a range of information on wellbeing such as eating and sleeping well, getting moving again and managing daily activities.

A patient support group with a range of resources and patient stories.

Lancashire COVID Patient Support is a resource that has been developed by a group of multi-disciplinary health professionals at Lancashire Teaching Hospitals. The purpose of the website is to support individuals with their initial recovery from COVID-19. It includes a range of exercises, advice and tips.

For people left with breathing difficulties after COVID-19, as well as their family members, carers, healthcare professionals, policy-makers and researchers.

Managing physical symptoms of breathlessness, fatigue, anxiety, swallow changes, eating and drinking

Homeowners struggling to pay their mortgage due to Coronavirus will be able to extend their mortgage payment holiday for a further three months, or start making reduced payments, in proposals published today.

NEL resources

A one-stop-shop of patient information and resources from Homerton. This includes fatigue management, physical activity and nutritional advice.

Post Covid information pack for patients covering:

  1. Managing Nutrition and COVID
  2. Managing fatigue
  3. Managing Breathlessness

Respiratory information

Adult Pulse oximetry Monitoring Covid-19 Diary: This animation will inform you about COVID, how to measure your oxygen levels (using a pulse oximeter), what the danger signs to look out for are and when to seek urgent help.

Advice from the British Lung Foundation including what to do If you are breathless or need to clear your lungs.

Dietary information

To aid your recovery from COVID-19 and support you to get back to everyday life sooner, there dietetic team at Homerton has put together this guide on eating and drinking when recovering from COVID-19

The Patients Association Nutrition Checklist is a paper-based tool to identify potential risk of malnutrition (as undernutrition) and offers guidance, advice and signposting on next steps.

An overview with useful resources for patients and carers. Endorsed by the British Dietetic Association (BDA), the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) and the British Association of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition (BAPEN)

Dealing with fatigue

Useful advice and resources on rehabilitation from the Royal College of Occupational Therapists.

Recovering from COVID-19: Post viral-fatigue and conserving energy – advice from the Royal College of Occupational Therapists

NHS advice on what you can do if you are suffering from fatigue

Mental Health services

  • Barking and Dagenham, Havering, Redbridge, Waltham Forest: Call Talking Therapies on 0300 300 1554 or visit https://www.talkingtherapies.nelft.nhs.uk/. You can also contact Mental Health Direct on 0300 555 1000. 
  • City and Hackney: Call Talk Changes on 020 7683 4278 or visit www.talkchanges.org.uk If you need urgent help because you are worried that you might harm yourself or someone else, call the 24-hour City & Hackney crisis helpline on 0800 073 0006.
  • Newham: Call Talking Therapies on 020 8475 8080 or visit www.newhamtalkingtherapies.nhs.uk. Also contact the Newham Mental Health Crisis Line on freephone 0800 073 0066.
  • Tower Hamlets: Call Talking Therapies on 020 8475 8080 or visit https://towerhamletstalkingtherapies.nhs.uk/). You can also call the Tower Hamlets Mental Health Crisis Line on freephone 0800 073 0003. 
  • You can also access a whole range of online resources from Thrive LND on their Good Thinking website. 

Bereavement support

The government has produced some support for the bereaved which contains Information to help bereaved families, friends or next of kin make important decisions. This has been translated into a number of different languages.

Thrive LND has put together a resource pack to support you if you are grieving the sudden death of someone close to you, or if you are supporting someone going through sudden bereavement. 

The Coroners' Courts Support Service has also produced a helpline leaflet and a bereavement support pack.

We have also produced a series of guidance packs to support people through the bereavement process, which is made even more challenging during the pandemic. There are three guides available, as follows:

How to prepare for the death of a friend or relative: helps people understand what to expect when someone is near the end of their life, provides tips on practical care and information on where to go for further support. 

What to do if a friend or relative dies: provides practical advice on areas such as arranging a funeral, looking after an individual’s personal affairs and caring for their pets. 

Where to go for bereavement support: a list of organisations for people to reach out for support at any stage of the grieving process. It includes national, local and specialist organisations, along with contact details. 

Barking and Dagenham

Long Covid non-clinical support 

Citizen’s Advice: Free self-help online advice line: 0808 278 7870

Homeowners or people with a mortgage – people would have to apply for universal credit and that way would get support with mortgage interest. https://www.gov.uk/government/news/help-with-mortgages-to-continue-for-homeowners-affected-by-coronavirus

Benefit calculator:

Home and money hub:

Monday to Friday, walk-in service at Barking Learning Centre or Dagenham Library

Barking and Dagenham working together:

Havering