This guideline covers identifying, assessing and managing the long-term effects of COVID-19, often described as ‘long COVID’. It makes recommendations about care in all healthcare settings for adults, children and young people who have new or ongoing symptoms 4 weeks or more after the start of acute COVID-19. It also includes advice on organising services for long COVID.
This guideline has been developed jointly by NICE, the Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network (SIGN) and the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP).
To develop the recommendations, we have used the following clinical definitions for the initial illness and long COVID at different times:
- Acute COVID-19: signs and symptoms of COVID-19 for up to 4 weeks.
- Ongoing symptomatic COVID-19: signs and symptoms of COVID-19 from 4 to 12 weeks.
- Post-COVID-19 syndrome: signs and symptoms that develop during or after an infection consistent with COVID-19, continue for more than 12 weeks and are not explained by an alternative diagnosis.
In addition to the clinical case definitions, ‘long COVID’ is commonly used to describe signs and symptoms that continue or develop after acute COVID‑19. It includes both ongoing symptomatic COVID‑19 and post‑COVID‑19 syndrome (defined above).
Published on the 18th December 2020: https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng188/resources/covid19-rapid-guideline-managing-the-longterm-effects-of-covid19-pdf-66142028400325 Information: https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng188