COVID-19 related (research) initiatives
Due to CAPHRI's focus on care and public health, our researchers are involved in many different aspects of COVID-19 research.
Prediction models for diagnosis and prognosis of covid-19 infection: systematic review and critical appraisal
CAPHRI (Laure Wynants, Luc Smits) and a group of international researchers studied 31 prediction models for the early detection and progression of COVID-19 and concluded that most models are not scientifically reliable enough to serve as a basis for medical decision. The systemic review was published in the BMJ. This review will be regularly updated in the coming months: https://www.bmj.com/content/369/bmj.m1328
COVID-19 Epidemiology update
Four Dutch institutes - Maastricht University/CAPHRI, RIVM, Cochrane Netherlands and UMC Utrecht - have joined forces to coordinate new systematic reviews on COVID-19 initiatives within the Netherlands and coordinate them as much as possible to avoid duplication. To date, 50 epidemiologists have signed up to participate in the collection, assessment and, where necessary, summarization of the available data and evidence regarding COVID-19. The systematic reviews will cover the following domains: 1) (curative) interventions; 2) preventive interventions/measures; 3) diagnostic and prognostic prediction models; 4) risk factors and 5) diagnostic tests.
COVID-19 and the impact on (the care for) older people
At the request of Ministry of Health (VWS), the Living Lab in Ageing and Long-Term Care started an inventory, together with other academic livings labs for care for the elderly in the Netherlands, into the consequences of the virus in long-term care. Within our research program (via Prof. Dr. Jos Schols), we are working on a national registry initiated by Verenso (the Dutch Association of Elderly Care Physicians) and UNO-VUMC to gain insight into the incidence and course of (suspected) COVID-19 in nursing home care. This way we try to get answers to questions such as: What are the characteristics and symptoms of residents with a (suspected) COVID-19 infection? And: How is the course of a COVID-19 infection among nursing home residents? This knowledge is important for the organization of care, policy considerations and the national distribution of protective materials. Registration is now possible via 5 different EPD (electronic medical record)- systems.
Eight weeks after the lock down of Dutch nursing homes for visitors, a guideline was developed to cautiously open 26 nursing homes for visitors. The Living Lab of Ageing and Long-Term Care studied how the national guideline was applied in the local context of the nursing homes, the compliance to local protocols and the impact on well-being of residents, their family caregivers and staff. Based on the results, published in this report, the Dutch government decided to allow all nursing homes in the Netherlands to open their homes using the guidelines.
Since visiting restrictions were relaxed last June, 76 nursing homes in the Netherlands have been monitored in a study by the Living Lab in Ageing & Long-Term Care, run by UM and Radboud university medical center. The study assessed what daily life in nursing homes is like now and the extent to which nursing homes think they are prepared for the new coronavirus wave. Read more.
Finally, the Living Lab is involved in the development of a triage instrument for the rehabilitation of elderly AFTER a COVID-19 infection as well as in the development of treatment guidelines for the geriatric rehabilitation of elderly AFTER a COVID-19 infection.
Rehabilitation COVID-19 patients
It is important to be able to provide appropriate support to every corona patient in order to return to an optimal level of functioning as soon as possible. In collaboration with the hospitals in the Limburg region, Adelante, Ciro, the Living Lab Rehabilitation and the Living Lab in Ageing and Long-Term Care South Limburg have joined forces to provide appropriate rehabilitation.
Covid-19 Reporting system for Dutch General Practitioners
All general practice departments at Dutch universities collaborate in a single large-scale project to establish the numbers of COVID-19 patients nationally who are receiving intensive and palliative care from GPs outside of hospital. The project is led by Jochen Cals, professor of Effective Diagnostics and General Practitioner. The General Practice Consortium shares the national results on its website on a regular basis.
Impact of COVID-19 on the Meuse-Rhine Euregion
MUMC+, GGD Zuid Limburg, euPrevent and Sciensano received a €1 million Interreg grant to investigate what the effects of the national prevention measures were and are on the occurrence of COVID-19 in the population of the Euregion Meuse-Rhine. In the coming year 30,000 people will be invited to take part in the study in two rounds.
Improvise, adapt, overwork? Understanding and learning from hospitals' adaptations to COVID-19 and their effects on professional functioning and recovery
Dirk Ruwaard, Daan Westra and their team received a ZonMw grant for their research project 'Improve, adapt, overwork? Understanding and learning from hospitals' adaptations to COVID-19 and their effects on professional functioning and recovery'. They will study the COVID-19 related adaptations by 5 hospitals in the Province of Limburg and their effects on the organisations and the wellbeing of their employees. The study aims to identify and disseminate best practices that help healthcare organizations throughout the country to successfully cope with the uncertainty of the crisis’ development.
Primary care research on outcomes of COVID-19 (PRO-COVID-19)
Jochen Cals, Eefje de Bont and their team (RL Optimising Patient Care) have been awarded a ZonMw grant for their research project ‘Primary care Research on Outcomes of COVID-19 (PRO-COVID19’. They will study which patients suspected of COVID-19 who visited the GP, have an increased risk of of being admitted to hospital. The long-term consequences of more serious COVID-19 infections (complicated respiratory tract infections) of patients who have visited the GP are also being studied.
Evaluation allied health rehabilitation care for COVID-19 patients
A national research consortium will evaluate allied health rehabilitation care for COVID-19 patients in close collaboration with the professional field. The consortium consists of researchers from various knowledge centers throughout the Netherlands, including the Department of Physiotherapy and Epidemiology of CAPHRI's research line Functioning, Participation and Rehabilitation. The allied health care to be evaluated includes remedial therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, dietetics and physiotherapy.