South East London Long Covid Patients Create Videos to Help Others

16 Feb 2024

South East London Long COVID patients have helped design a series of 10 short videos to support fellow patients with their recovery.

The 10 short videos, which have been featured here on the BBC, give tips on how to deal with things like fatigue, brain fog and difficulty sleeping.

The animations, made with the help of clinicians at Guy’s and St Thomas’ hospitals, are called the ‘COVID Recovery Puzzle’ to reflect how recuperation can feel like putting the pieces of life back together again. Videos can be watched in any order with the four ‘corners’ of the puzzle being most crucial to wellbeing – boosting your sleep, relaxed breathing, food for recovery and energy recharge.

Top tips include planning rest periods before you feel tired and using a traffic light system to assess symptoms ahead of carrying out an activity. Each film finishes with three key things to remember.

The videos, which are available here, have been created by participants in the South East London Long COVID programme and clinicians. They hope to increase understanding of the condition and open up conversations with family, friends and employers.

George Apunte and Stephanie Schreiber, part of the Patient Advisory Group, have supported the development of the videos.

George, a Lambeth resident, talked about his Long COVID symptoms ‘I had brain fog. I had some really bad fevers, breathlessness and joint pain. The tiredness was a killer. It was really hard because I didn’t have the strength sometimes to pick up my one-year-old son. It felt like I’d been robber of precious time.”

Stephanie, from Bromley, shared ‘ We’re really proud of what we’ve managed to create. I hope we’ve made long Covid a lot less frightening and showed that recovery is possible.” Stephanie is now retraining as a health coach as she continues her recovery.

The South East London Long COVID Programme is a two-year programme funded by NHS Charities Together and Guy’s & St Thomas’ Charity. It covers all five NHS Trusts in south east London and their hospital charities, with the aim of accelerating the recovery of people with Long COVID across the six boroughs of south east London.