There was very little evidence on interventions, but the panel agreed that everyone should have self management support and information. There was a lack of COVID-19-specific evidence on managing many of the common symptoms related to COVID-19, such as fatigue, dizziness and cognitive problems (such as brain fog), but the panel agreed that support, such as setting achievable goals, should be tailored to the person’s needs. Patient organisations and online support groups can help to support self management. The NHS websites Coronavirus (COVID-19): General advice | NHS inform and Your COVID recovery were highlighted as a potential source of reliable up-to-date information and support.
The panel agreed that support to return to education or work, such as setting achievable goals, should be tailored to the person’s needs. This might involve support to work or study at home, flexible working or a phased return.
For the November 2021 update, the panel heard expert testimonies from Stark 2021 and Whittaker 2021 describing that absence from or poor performance in education was associated with poor outcomes for children and young people with ongoing symptomatic COVID‑19 or post-COVID-19 syndrome. The panel agreed that this would also apply to adults returning to work or education. Healthcare professionals should be aware that people who are struggling to return to work or education may have symptoms that persist for longer than other people and may need additional support.
Further advice on returning to work can be found in the Society for Occupational Health Medicine guidance on COVID-19 return to work guide for recovering workers and COVID-19 return to work guide for managers.