AAPM&R is Calling for a Comprehensive National Plan to Address the Needs of Millions Suffering from Long COVID

According to two recent publications from the Journal of the American Medical Association, ten to thirty percent of individuals who had COVID-19 reported at least one persistent symptom up to six months after the virus left their bodies. That means 3 to 10 million Americans are experiencing symptoms of Long COVID or Post-Acute Sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 infection (PASC), which are varied and ongoing, including neurological challenges, cognitive problems such as brain fog, shortness of breath, fatigue, pain, and mobility issues.

AAPM&R called on President Joe Biden and Congress to gear up for the next coronavirus crisis by preparing and implementing a comprehensive national plan focused on meeting the needs of millions of individuals suffering from the long-term symptoms of COVID-19, and help them regain quality of life and return to being active members of their communities. The plan must include a commitment to three major components:

  • Resources to build necessary infrastructure to meet this crisis
  • Equitable access to care for patients
  • Research to advance medical understanding of Long COVID

PM&R physicians are uniquely qualified to help guide the multidisciplinary effort needed to develop a plan for this crisis. As a specialty, physiatrists are investigators, team leaders and problem solvers. PM&R physicians see the whole patient AND the whole picture of the rehabilitation ecosystem. Physiatrists are exactly what this crisis needs. Learn more about our Multidisciplinary PASC Collaborative, launched in March 2021, which is working on quality improvement initiatives.

AAPM&R Advocacy, Healthcare Collaborations and Partnerships, and Customized Resources to Support PM&R During This Crisis

AAPM&R is working to ensure PM&R is part of the national conversation about healthcare amidst COVID-19 and advocating for the federal support, legislation, regulation relief and resources that physiatrists need now. One way we are doing this is through our partnerships and collaborations with other specialty societies. The Academy continuously works to represent PM&R through these collaborations, and it is through these partnerships that we are able to discuss and share a variety of resources with you that you critically need.

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AAPM&R Urges States to Provide Greater Medical Liability Protection to Physicians Providing Care During COVID-19

Apr 23, 2020

On April 22, AAPM&R submitted a letter to the National Governors Association, urging state Governors to provide greater medical liability protection to physicians providing care during the current public health emergency. Though we know that some states have already taken action to address physician concerns, we have urged all state Governors to act to preserve and protect the health care workforce.

In addition, on April 13, the Academy sent a letter to Congress advocating for additional aid to physiatrists in the fourth COVID-19 package. In our letter, we advocated that Congress enact broad medical liability protection, amongst several other critical issues impacting physiatrists.

We are working to advocate on your behalf; however, we know that this is a widespread issue that affects all physicians. As such, we will continue outreach to state medical associations for a unified collaboration to ensure all physicians can provide the necessary and potentially lifesaving care needed, without fear of consequences for treatment provided in good faith.