What is RECOVER?
In November 2021, MaineHealth received approximately $1.5 million from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for up to four years to participate in a nationwide study of the long-term effects of COVID-19. Researchers from MaineHealth Institute for Research (MHIR) are among those at more than 70 institutions across the country participating in the NIH Researching COVID to Enhance Recovery (RECOVER) Initiative.
The grant came to MaineHealth as a subaward from West Virginia University (WVU), a partner site. WVU and MaineHealth are leading an 11-site consortium across the country that will enroll patients in the study, with a focus on rural and underserved communities.
NIH launched the RECOVER Initiative to learn why some people have prolonged symptoms (referred to as “long COVID”) or develop new or returning symptoms after the acute phase of infection from SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. The most common symptoms include fatigue, “brain fog”, shortness of breath, pain, headaches, anxiety, depression, fever, chronic cough and sleep problems.
What is happening at MaineHealth with RECOVER?
This observational study will complete its target enrollment of 85 patients across the MaineHealth service area in September 2022 (nationwide enrollment goal is 17,000). The research team at MaineHealth noted high interest in the study from the public and is planning to follow the participants for 4 years.
The MaineHealth research team team will join the research effort to answer three study aims: 1) to characterize the range of symptoms and the natural history of Long COVID, 2) to calculate its incidence and prevalence, as well as risk and resiliency factors, and 3) to understand the underlying biology.
While the RECOVER study is an observational study, the NIH has plans for several treatment studies including two that will be occurring at MaineHealth later in 2022 and early 2023.
For more information about the NIH’s RECOVER initiative: www.recovercovid.org