COVID 19 NEUROPSYCHIATRIC SYMPTOMS INCLUDE DEPRESSION, ANXIETY, AND OBSESSIVE COMPULSIONS.
There are patients who will develop impaired mental health symptoms in relation to Covid 19. Some symptoms are a result of situational stressors. Patients may experience depression and anxiety. There are treatments available to respond to these symptoms.
In addition- some patients may experience organic symptoms of post CV19 infection as neuropsychiatric sequelae. This is similar to a PANDAS presentation in children, in that the BBB is breached - resulting in cytokene activity in the brain- specifically impacting the chemical messengers we work with in psychiatry- dopamine, norepinephrine, serotonin, gaba, glutamate, acetylcholine. Patient's have symptoms of anxiety, depression, obsessions and compulsions. Approach to treatment may include diagnosing and treating the depression, anxiety, and/or OCD related to a medical condition and providing health education in relation to immune support for convalescence and recovery. This of course, within psychiatric scope of practice and in collaboration with other providers, PCP, ID, etc.
APN's are uniquely positioned to identify and treat post Covid 19 patients with a high level of quality of care. We have a deep understand of the patient from a wholistic perspective. This allows us to work collaboratively with medically trained providers to establish achievable treatment goals for our patients. Without this, it will be the equivalent of putting the finger in the dike adjacent to the hole. Accurate diagnosis facilitates effective treatment.These circumstances thrust APN's into the diagnostic and treatment arena as a valued independent member of the team. Since our clinical acumen has been integral in this circumstance, it bears noting that this is what we bring to the table every day. Our skills are innate and enduring- they don't disappear when a crisis resolves. As such, our autonomy must not be transient. It is time that legislation and regulatory agencies demonstrate respect for APN capabilities and acknowledge their role as a consistent and valued contributor to the provider treatment team.