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Project #75:
Long-COVID: symptoms, diagnoses and prescriptions recorded in electronic health records after COVID-19

Some people who have had COVID-19 (the disease caused by the coronavirus responsible for the 2020 pandemic) complain of ongoing symptoms, sometimes for many months, after they recover from their initial infection. While we know that ongoing post-COVID-19 symptoms occur, we do not yet know how often this happens, or the full spectrum of possible symptoms. We want to know whether doctors decide that the symptoms are due to COVID-19 or another disease. We would like to find out which, if, any, symptoms resolve over time and how quickly or slowly this happens. Finally, we also do not know whether there are any factors that can predict which groups of people are more likely to have continuing symptoms after they have COVID-19, specifically in relation to age, sex and vaccination status.

It is vital that we know the answers to these questions so that we are better able to support those struggling with ongoing symptoms and plan the health services they need.

Therefore, we plan to investigate these questions using routinely recorded health information from very large numbers of the UK general population. This routine healthcare information is recorded every time someone has any sort of contact with a general practitioner or a hospital, making it a large and powerful source of information for answering these questions. We access this information in a very safe way to ensure that we never see any individual’s health records, we only ever see the results of our studies in groups.

  • Study leads: Kathryn MansfieldLaurie Tomlinson
  • Organisation: London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine
  • Project type: Research
  • Topic area: Post-COVID health impacts