The coronavirus pandemic has meant that clinicians have had to swiftly collate the limited knowledge available about the virus and how it impacts people, particularly those with long term conditions, and implement this knowledge in order to protect those at greatest risk.
The virus is known to cause mild symptoms in most of the population in general, but for those who are elderly or who have one or more long term conditions, the risk of contracting the virus, or having more severe symptoms, seems to be greater.
By the end of this article you should be able to:
- Understand what shielding is
- Recognise why and how shielding of people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) should occur
- Evaluate the advice from a range of sources regarding how to manage COPD during the pandemic
- Implement guidance on the management of COVID-19 related exacerbations of COPD and compare this with the standard advice for the management of acute exacerbations of COPD (AECOPD)
- Appraise the importance of holistic care for shielded patients, including mental health
What is shielding?