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Approaches to long COVID care: the Veterans Health Administration experience in 2021
  1. Allison M Gustavson1,2,
  2. T L Eaton3,4,
  3. R M Schapira5,6,
  4. T J Iwashyna7,8,
  5. M Adly9,10 and
  6. A Purnell9
  1. 1 VA Health Services Research and Development, Center for Care Delivery and Outcomes Research, Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
  2. 2 Department of Medicine, Division of General Internal Medicine, University of Minnesota System, Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
  3. 3 Institute for Healthcare Policy and Innovation, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA
  4. 4 School of Nursing, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA
  5. 5 Research Service, New Orleans VA Medical Center, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA
  6. 6 Department of Internal Medicine, Tulane University School of Medicine, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA
  7. 7 Department of Medicine, Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care, University of Michigan Michigan Medicine, Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA
  8. 8 Veterans Affairs Center for Clinical Management Research, Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA
  9. 9 Central Office, US Department of Veterans Affairs, Washington, DC, USA
  10. 10 Office of the Chief Technology Officer, US Department of Veterans Affairs, Washington, DC, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr T L Eaton, Institute for Healthcare Policy & Innovation, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA; tameat{at}

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Long COVID has challenged healthcare systems to organise care for a large group of complex patients at scale. Yet, despite these problems, the evidence base for long COVID care remains scant, with little criteria-standard, evidence-based practices to solve these problems. Therefore, we characterise how each facility within the large, multifacility Veterans Health Administration (VHA) healthcare system, one of the largest integrated healthcare systems in the USA serving over nine million veterans, approached the development, staffing and referral patterns of long COVID programmes.

This project integrates two workstreams for information: (1) the Long COVID Environmental Scan and (2) the VHA Long COVID Learning Collaborative. The Long COVID Environmental Scan was developed from engagement with VHA subject matter experts and review of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) documentation and additional authoritative guidance. Initiated through the Veterans Affairs (VA) Office of Innovation and Discovery, the 41-question survey focused …

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  • AMG and TLE are joint first authors.

  • MA and AP are joint senior authors.

  • Twitter @MPLS_CCDOR, @tammyeaton17

  • Contributors All authors made substantial contributions to the conception or design of the work; acquisition, analysis or interpretation of data for the work; drafting the work or revising it critically for important intellectual content; final approval of the version to be published; and agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.

  • Funding This work was supported by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) (grant K12HS026379); the National Institutes of Health’s National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (grant KL2TR002492); and the Veterans Administration Health Services Research and Development COVID-19 Observational Research Collaboratory (C19-21-278) and IIR 17-045. The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the position or policy of the Department of Veterans Affairs or the US Government, AHRQ, PCORI or Minnesota Learning Health System Mentored Career Development Program (MN-LHS).

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.