Photo shows Dr. Andrew Martin is with Steven Magnotta of New Egypt, one of the first patients in Deborah’s new Post-COVID Recovery Program. Steven contracted COVID at the end of December. “I was sick for seven weeks,” he said. “I had pneumonia for four weeks, constant chills, loss of smell and insomnia.” Although he said he is feeling better he knew he needed some post-COVID recovery care. “I want to feel better, and I want to get checked out to make sure I have no long-term damage. By taking the step to come to Deborah’s Post-COVID Recovery Program I am giving myself a boost to fully heal.”
Deborah Heart and Lung Center, New Jersey’s only specialty heart, lung, and vascular hospital, and an alliance member of the Cleveland Clinic Heart, Vascular & Thoracic Institute, has announced the opening of its Post-COVID Recovery Program.
This new pulmonary medicine program — under the medical direction of Andrew Martin, MD, Deborah’s Chair, Pulmonary Medicine — is specially designed to address the present, and emerging, health problems of patients who have had COVID-19, and are negative for the virus.
Patients in the program receive a thorough evaluation, followed by a diagnosis and individualized treatment plan. This plan will address either the continuing health problems of those who never fully recovered from their initial bout of the virus; or for the brand-new, previously undiagnosed, medical problems which have emerged post-COVID. The program will integrate other specialties in the treatment plan of the patient as deemed necessary, including cardiology, hematology, radiology, pulmonary rehab, and physical therapy.
John Hill, RRT-NPS, Deborah’s Vice-President, Pulmonary Services said the program was created to fill a critical community need.
“We have already seen many patients presenting with lingering effects of the virus,” he said. “These patients are no longer contagious, but they still don’t feel right. Their breathing may be labored, they may still be weak, and they may have a myriad of other conditions. We want to work with these patients to help them recover as much of their strength and functionality as possible. After a year of studying the coronavirus, we now know that COVID-19 is exceptionally hard on the body, and recovery is not as simple as getting over the flu, especially if during your illness, you needed to be on a ventilator.”
Hill added: “This is just the beginning. I suspect we are going to be dealing with the effects from COVID for many years in the future. Deborah is well positioned to play a key regional role in post-COVID recovery. In addition to the resources of our pulmonary staff, we have an excellent rehabilitative team and one of the top-rated cardiac programs in the country.”
Patient eligibility includes:
• Previously tested positive for COVID-19 and were not hospitalized, but who continue to experience respiratory symptoms more than six weeks following infection or
• Hospitalized for treatment of COVID-19 or
• A pre-existing underlying lung disease and who had COVID , and
• Currently testing COVID- negative for an active infection
For more information about Deborah’s Post-COVID Recovery Clinic, visit www.DemandDeborah.org or call 609-621-2080 to make an appointment.