COVID-19 patients cared for at Walsall Manor Hospital are helping a worldwide study which aims to identify why some people are more vulnerable to becoming critically ill.
Xana Marriott, Senior Sister for Critical Care Rehabilitation at Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust is Principal Investigator for the Genetics of Mortality in Critical Care (GenOMICC) study.
She has been working to recruit participants and says for many, this is an important part of their ongoing recovery.
Xana is part of Walsall Healthcare’s Critical Care Rehabilitation Team which supports long term patients on their recovery journey using a host of approaches to cover both physical and psychological support.
She said: “Over the last two years we have worked with many patients who were critically ill with COVID-19 and “Why me?” is often one of the most common questions they have. They – and we – want to find out what makes one person more susceptible than another to becoming critically ill. What is it in someone’s DNA that makes them more vulnerable?
“If we can collectively give them some of the answers they’re looking for through the GenOMICC study that is a really powerful and positive outcome for them as they continue their recovery. COVID-19 has been life-changing for people across our communities and research can be equally as life-changing if it helps our understanding and brings us closer to more effective treatment for our patients.”
Xana said there are still opportunities for patients to get involved as GenoMICC aims to recruit a total of 100,000 genomes, the entire set of DNA instructions found in a cell.
She added: “I would also urge my fellow specialist nurses to get involved with research. I have had excellent support from our FORCE (Faculty of Clinical research and Education) Team and it is a fascinating area of healthcare.”
Rob Chadwick, Senior Research Nurse at Walsall Healthcare, said: “This type of study highlights the importance of research; whether a study is directly interventional or not, increasing our knowledge base can lead to breakthrough treatments.
“Xana is a great example to other specialist nurses of the vital role they can play in enhancing our knowledge through the power of research and using this to improve our patients’ experience.”