Help has arrived for people in the Hudson Valley and western Connecticut who had COVID-19 and continue to have symptoms months later.
with lasting symptoms and health complications may be eligible for Nuvance
Health’s COVID Recovery Program. The program provides a thorough assessment for
ongoing virus complications, offers symptom management and uses a
collaborative, coordinated approach to diagnosis and treat patients.
“These patients have had symptoms that have persisted over time, interfering with their day-to-day lives,” said Dr. Christopher Lehrach, President of the Nuvance Health Medical Practices. “Treatment may require coordination across medical specialties due to the variations and multisystem nature of COVID-19 symptoms, such as breathing problems, cognitive difficulties, elevated heart rates and gastrointestinal illness.”
The program is for adult patients who
continue to struggle with one or more aftereffects after their initial COVID-19
diagnosis. The official name of these “long-haul” symptoms is post-acute
sequelae of SARS-COV-2 infection or “PASC.”
Cough, chest and joint pain, difficulty breathing or feeling short of breath, fever and headache are the most common symptoms. Other complaints such as memory problems, loss of taste or smell, rash, hair loss and diarrhea may persist. More serious emerging complications include injury to the lungs, brain, heart, vascular system and kidneys.
“Those impacted were not always the sickest. We’ve seen younger people with no underlying medical problems who had mild to moderate cases,” Lehrach said. “Some even feel better for weeks and then start feeling symptomatic again.”
The first appointment is via telemedicine, where the person’s condition, symptoms, medical history, risk factors, previous tests and treatments are reviewed by a physician. The doctor then makes recommendations for symptom management and/or provides referrals for additional diagnostic testing and specialty care.
“As healthcare clinicians, we want to do all we can to help these patients get back to good health,” Lehrach said. “Improving their quality of life consistent with their goals is our highest priority.”