Heart and stroke complications are a known risk for individuals that develop long COVID-19. Presently, long COVID-19 is managed at home. Immune and brain dysfunction, with concomitant cognitive and mood disorders, are also long COVID-19 complications.
Through three deep dive workshops with Northern Health (NH), Whittlesea City Council and Safer Care Victoria, a significant gap was identified in health service support to those with long-COVID as to date healthcare system efforts have focused on managing and isolating patients newly diagnosed with COVID-19. Moreover, patients from diverse ethnic backgrounds serviced by NH services, appear particularly vulnerable to long-COVID-19 related misinformation, including its at home management.
'Eat Move Heal', a multi-school, multi-College collaborative research project with external partners Northern Health, City of Whittlesea and SaferCare Victoria, aims to co-design diet/nutrition, exercise and mental health support tools to recovery (brain, heart, immune system) from long COVID-19. One of these support tools includes a brochure created by RMIT’s Mental Health Innovation Network that includes mental health resources.
There are plans to expand this initiative to deploy the tools generated to 30,000 long COVID-19 patients in the Whittlesea community, as well as generate and test a new tool to monitor heart and stroke risk in this population, with capability for rapid deployment into this community.
It is expected that users of the Eat, Move, Heal, a culturally appropriate online education and engagement program, will improve patients’ understanding of living as a society with COVID-19, and learn ways to self-care for better physical, nutritional, and mental wellness.
This project is supported by RMIT through the University’s researchers in the research team, including the Biomedical and Health Innovation Platform Director, Distinguished Professor Magdalena Plebanski and other Platform affiliates. It was also funded by the EIP Re-start program.