Can a Health Package maintain the physical and mental health of people with and without COVID-19 during quarantine?

Ms Caoimhe Scales1, Dr Ling-Ling Tsai2,3, Sarah  Whitney2, Miranda  Shaw4, Dr Owen  Hutchings4, Dr Lissa  Spencer5, Dr Lil Vrklevski6, Dr Sharon Carey7, Prof Jennifer A Alison2,3

1Exercise Physiology, Special Health Accommodation, Sydney Local Health District, , Australia, 2Allied Health, Sydney Local Health District, , Australia, 3Faculty of Medicine and Health, University of Sydney, , Australia, 4RPA Virtual Hospital (rpavirtual), Sydney Local Health District, , Australia, 5Physiotherapy, Sydney Local Health District, , Australia, 6Psychology, Sydney Local Health District, , Australia, 7Nutrition and Dietetics, Sydney Local Health District, , Australia

Background: People returning to Australia are required to quarantine in a hotel. This period of isolation may affect physical and mental health.

Aim: To evaluate the effects of a Health Package (HP) on physical and mental health of people with or without COVID-19 in quarantine.

Methods: Cohort study of people with mild COVID-19 symptoms and those without COVID-19 quarantined in hotel quarantine managed by rpavirtual, Sydney. After medical clearance,   consenting participants completed three surveys: (Depression, Anxiety, Stress Scale (DASS-21; Brief Fatigue Inventory (BFI); EuroQol-5D-5L (EQ-5D). After at least seven days of the HP (consisting of individualised exercise program, anxiety management techniques and nutrition guide), participants repeated the surveys and a participant reported experience questionnaire (PREQ).

Results: Of 26 recruited, nine participants have completed (mean (SD) age 37 (12) years, 6 males). DASS-21: Depression Pre-HP 1.8 (2.4), Post-HP 2.8 (3.4); Anxiety Pre-HP 1.9 (2.2), Post-HP 1.4 (1.7); Stress Pre-HP 3.1 (2.8), Post-HP 2.8 (2.1); BFI: Pre-HP 2.1(1.4), Post-HP 2.2 (2.1); EQ-5D Visual Analogue Scale: Pre-HP 78 (19)%, Post-HP 79 (20)%. There were no significant pre-post changes in any outcomes. PREQ showed 88% always/mostly felt better post-exercise; 66% reported anxiety management and 67% reported nutritional information useful; 89% reported the HP helped them cope with isolation.

Conclusions and Clinical Implications: The HP for people in quarantine demonstrated stability of outcomes. The majority of participants reported that the HP helped them cope with isolation. Provision of a HP during quarantine could be useful to support physical and mental health. (The study is ongoing).


Biography:

Caoimhe Scales is an Accredited Exercise Physiologist with Sydney Local Health District (SLHD). For the last 12 months Caoimhe has been deployed within the SLHD Special Health Accommodation (COVID-19 Quarantine Hotels) and played a key role in developing the Allied Health and Exercise Physiology services onsite. She is also the Study Coordinator for the Health Package Study.

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