Virus to cause long-term damage: Health experts

Beijing, May 18

China’s health authority has officially included damage to a number of internal organs as among the potential effects of the novel coronavirus, expanding medical insurance coverage for patients as the long-term toll of the disease emerges.

China’s National Health Commission (NHC) in its guidelines on Covid-19 survivors said some recovered patients would require treatment for lung and heart damage, for movement problems from muscle loss, as well as for psychological disorders.

In addition to informing health workers about the potential long-term treatment needs of the patients, the authorities have classified these conditions as chronic diseases, allowing residents to claim for medical expenses under government-run medical insurance schemes.

“As the number of Covid-19 patients discharged from hospital increases, the rehabilitation needs have become prominent,” the Hong Kong-based South China Morning Post reported on Sunda, citing the NHC guidelines.

Understanding is growing of the effects of the novel coronavirus on the organs of patients, even after they apparently recover.

While most patients, especially those with mild and moderate symptoms, can recover without long-term consequences to their health, studies indicated that those with severe symptoms can have organ damage and require a much longer time for rehabilitation, the report said. 

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