16 April 2020
This guidance outlines how healthcare providers can meet the psychological needs of people who have been hospitalised with severe Coronavirus.
Focusing on patients who are recovering from severe illness but continue to experience significant physical and psychological symptoms, our guidance recommends a three-step approach:
In addition to the challenges any serious illness brings, this guidance highlights some specific aspects of the Covid-19 pandemic which may increase the risks of psychological difficulties:
Based on emerging knowledge and clinical experience during the current pandemic, the guidance also draws on prior research from the SARS and MERS outbreaks, which suggests that psychological consequence was more severe among people who contracted these infections, compared to other critically ill patients.
The co-leads of the guidance paper, David Murphy (President of the British Psychological Society) and Dr Dorothy Wade (Principal Health Psychologist, Critical Care, at UCLH NHS Trust), have also produced a webinar exploring how to support the rehabilitation of patients in greater depth.