A health-care worker tests a woman at a pop-up COVID-19 assessment centre in Toronto on May 19, 2021. University of British Columbia researchers are looking for Canadians with long COVID to take part in a research project. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

A health-care worker tests a woman at a pop-up COVID-19 assessment centre in Toronto on May 19, 2021. University of British Columbia researchers are looking for Canadians with long COVID to take part in a research project. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

UBC project seeks input from COVID long-haulers

Crowd-sourcing site allows people to compare their symptoms with those of others

University of British Columbia researchers are searching for people with long COVID-19 to act as “citizen scientists” in a nation-wide project.

The goal of the Long COVID Patient Experience Project, researchers say, is to help understand the symptoms some people still experience three months or more after contracting the virus. The findings will inform where future research is directed and how best to care for those still suffering.

A recent federal survey found close to 15 per cent of adults who have contracted COVID-19 have experienced long-term symptoms, such as brain fog, fatigue, headaches, ringing ears, breathlessness and loss of taste or smell. Of those survey respondents, close to half said they’ve had those symptoms for more than a year, and 20 per cent said those symptoms impact their daily activities.

Read More: ‘Complete change in our quality of life’: Long COVID a burden for many Canadians

The UBC team is hoping to expand this still very small body of research. They’re asking people with long COVID who are 19 years or older to share their experiences through a crowd-sourcing website called patientscientist.ca. The team says it is the only site of its kind in Canada.

The information people provide will be kept confidential and will allow them to compare their symptoms and experiences with others using the site, the UBC team says. They’ll also be analyzing responses to inform their research.

Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email: rebecca.dyok@quesnelobserver.com



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