**Over 2 Million Americans Aren’t Working Due to Long Covid, Says Brookings**
**Report says the loss of work translates into $170 billion a year in lost wages**
**By Sumathi Reddy, The Wall Street Journal, Aug. 24, 2022**
**Between two million and four million Americans aren’t working due to the long-term effects of Covid-19, according to a new Brookings Institution report released Wednesday.**
**The inability to work translates to roughly $170 billion a year in lost wages, the report estimates. The report estimates that roughly 16 million Americans of working age — between 18 and 65 — have long Covid, which most groups and doctors define as wide-ranging symptoms that persist for months following an infection and can include shortness of breath, extreme fatigue and neurocognitive issues.**
**An estimated 10% to 30% of people with Covid develop the condition, according to studies and estimates from governments, hospitals, universities and doctors. It can occur after even mild cases....** [end quote]
Long Covid has a long list of symptoms. The causes may be residual infection, inflammation (resembling the cytokine storm that killed many young Covid patients), failure of tissues to use oxygen efficiently (resembling chronic fatigue syndrome) and, worst of all, autoimmune disease resembling lupus or rheumatoid arthritis. Research is ongoing. Each patient is different. They may have a combination of causes…and also have related mood disorders, like anxiety and/or depression. (Not surprising.)
The rate of long Covid in unvaccinated patients may be as high as 50% but in the vaccinated is (only!) 20%.
The U.S. Census has found that some long Covid patients are still working. But many are in real trouble because they are too sick to work but don’t qualify for disability payments.
Considering the large numbers, long Covid has real Macroeconomic impact.
It will take a while for the research to figure out how to diagnose patients and even longer how to treat them. The tests aren’t ordinary, routine tests.