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Understand the long-term effects

In February, the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) announced a plan to invest US$1.15 billion over the next four years into research on the long-term effects of COVID-19 (Nature, March 4). The Post-Acute Sequelae of COVID-19 (PASC), as these symptoms are known, include fatigue, fever, and shortness of breath. They can appear weeks after infection and last for months. The NIH plans to fund studies following patients and their recovery, as well as creating a bank of blood, urine, feces, and cerebrospinal fluid samples from patients with PASC for future analyses. So far, the NIH has received US$3.6 billion from US Congress to fund COVID-19 research.