New Delhi, 22 April 2021: The crisis brought in by the COVID-19 pandemic looms large, and its current resurgence has increased stress and anxiety among the public. COVID-19 is not only affecting the physical health of people but is also impacting the psychological or mental health of the patients and even their family members.

Realising the importance and need of psychological care along with the physical treatment, three premier institutions have come together to develop a Protocol for Psychosocial Rehabilitation of COVID-19 Patients. These 3 eminent institutions are: the Central Council for Research in Yoga & Naturopathy (CCRYN), an autonomous body of the Ministry of Ayush, the National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences (NIMHANS), Bengaluru and the Swami Vivekananda Yoga Anusandhana Samsthana (S-VYASA).  The release of this protocol is scheduled to take place on 23 April 2021 from 9:30 am to 11:30 am through a virtual event. The event will be presided over by Dr. HR Nagendra Chancellor, S-VYASA, Bengaluru. This will be followed by an Online Workshop for BNYS Practitioners in which they will be trained in the protocol.

The workshop will also address the enhanced the burden on the healthcare workforce in our country, from the perspective of the Naturopathy Sector.  The healthcare institutions in parts of our country have been overwhelmed by the sheer burden of Covid 19 cases. It has reportedly become a challenge under these circumstances to pay attention to every individual patient.

As per reports, the accompanying psychologic distress in covid 19 patients are often ignored and not managed. There have also been reports of anxiety and acute depression leading to suicides in Covid care hospitals.  Many of the patients, according to inputs coming in from different countries, have had to contend with isolation anxiety and distress due to fear of worsening of symptoms. Complications like respiratory distress, hypoxia, fatigue and insomnia and other symptoms have also been observed. Interventions Yoga and Naturopathy systems have shown effectiveness in facilitating recovery of Covid 19 patients. Simple breathing exercises and pranayama have been seen to enhance SPO2 levels in symptomatic patients and those with respiratory distress.  Preliminary reports from studies conducted by CCRYN also validate these findings.

The current protocol is a collaborative effort to address these symptoms and psychologic sequele of Covid 19 patients. The online workshop will help impart knowledge about epidemiology of Covid19, course of disease, screening for distress and psychologic sequele, management of distress and psychologic sequele using Yoga and Naturopathy approaches.