Healthwatch Reading has helped local Kenyan people understand more about Long Covid in its latest online information session.
The hospital doctor running the Royal Berkshire Hospital’s Long Covid service was the main speaker at the 9 May event attended by 38 people. Dr Deepak Ravindran, consultant in anaesthesia, pain and musculoskeletal medicine, told the session that more than one-quarter of people referred to his service have been from ethnic minorities.
He said around 10% of people infected with Covid experience problems that remain for longer than four weeks. Symptoms include fatigue, pain, shortness of breath, heart problems, anxiety, stomach problems, and loss of taste or smell.
Affected people can ask their GP to refer them to the Berkshire Long Covid Integrated Service, which offers a multidisciplinary team including a physiotherapist, pain and nutrition specialist. Treatments could include breathing retraining, medication and exercise such as Pilates.
Dr Ravindran also told the session about a national campaign group called LongCovidSOS, led by patients who campaign for better recognition by government, society and employers.
The session was the second that Healthwatch Reading has arranged in collaboration with the Reading Kenyan Association, as part of efforts to help local people get information about vaccines and other healthcare during the pandemic.