Sentiments of healthcare professionals (HCPs) to support the recovery of COVID-19 survivors with ongoing symptoms in Sri Lanka

05 Aug 2021
Respiratory conditions
  • COVID-19
Type of resource
Dublin 2021
Akila R Jayamaha, KIU, Sri Lanka
Clinical Research Results Aim Study aimed to evaluate the opinion of healthcare professionals (HCPs) to support people recovering from COVID-19 infection in Sri Lanka. Method A survey was carried out among Sri Lankan HCPs. Data were collected between January- February 2021 using a self-administered online survey, in Sinhalese language, which was distributed via e-mail, Facebook and WhatsApp. Data were analysed using descriptive statistics. Results 121 responses were received (90% nurses, 95% female, 63% aged 30–39 years). Most of the HCPs engaged in COVID-19 inpatient care (58%), 43% were responsible for biological sample collection/processing/analysis, 28% were responsible for primary care and regular follow-up and 20% of HCPs were not involved in any COVID-19 care. Majority of the HCPs suggested that post-COVID-19 support should be delivered as a home-based programme (83%). Respondents reported that support should include advice on nutrition (47%), infection control relating to COVID-19 (45%), coping with social isolation (40%), managing breathlessness (33%), advice on medications (29%), advice on returning to work (28%), support for anxiety or depression (28%), and aerobic exercise/regaining fitness levels (18%). Inadequate supply of PPE (78%), patient employment/financial concerns (68%), belief in the value of non-medical treatments (66%) and risk of patients infecting healthcare staff (64%) were reported as barriers to HCPs for referring patients to post COVID-19 support. Television (75%), dedicated smartphone app (71%) and telephone calls (70%) were suggested as appropriate communication strategies for supporting COVID-19 survivors.Conclusion Most HCPs perceived that post-COVID-19 support should be provided. Priority topics identified, included education and symptom self-management, and barriers to an effective referral process to post-COVID-19 support services. The results of this study could be used as an aide to develop support for COVID-19 survivors with ongoing symptom burden in Sri Lanka. Implementation Science/Service Development Research Ideas on Respiratory Conditions and Tobacco Dependency Abstract Declaration of Interest This research was funded by the University of Leicester IRDF ODA (M631PC27) and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) (17/63/20) using UK aid from the UK Government to support global health research. The views expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of the NIHR or the UK Department of Health and Social Care. References and Clinical Trial Registry Information