“Roughly 18 million American adults (7 percent of the adult population) have at least one symptom [of Long Covid 19] that has lasted 12 weeks after infection” according to an article October 31, 2022, in the Boston Globe. The most common symptoms people report are “fatigue, shortness of breath, difficulty concentrating, and muscle aches.” Some people with these symptoms say that their daily activities are limited; 4.5 million describe their limitations as “a lot.”
The recommendations of Katie Bach, a writer on the economic impact of Long Covid 19 and David Cutler, an economics professor at Harvard University, include expanded access to affordable treatment and more research. As to work issues, they urged accommodations where possible. For those workers, “whose jobs are physically demanding and ineligible for remote work,” for whom accommodations are not sufficient, they listed the following short-term disability proposals that Congress should address:
“[F]ederally funded short-term disability insurance to allow long COVID patients early in their disease to rest and, hopefully, recuperate; adjusted Supplemental Security Income/Social Security Disability Insurance guidance and expedited review processes for infection-associated illness patients, who need a different standard of “proof’’ of disability and for whom early rest may be crucial to recovery.”
Bach and Cutler also noted that the 24-month Medicare waiting period for those on disability should be waived.