Long Covid keeps up to 4 million people out of work in the US

Long Covid is keeping up to 4 million full-time employees in the US out of work and the annual cost of those lost wages alone is around $170 billion a year (and potentially up to $230 billion), revealed a new report.

According to the Brookings Institution, a nonprofit organization, if long-standing Covid patients do not begin to recover at a higher rate, the economic burden will continue to increase for the US.

“To give an idea of ​​the magnitude: If the long-term Covid population increases by just 10 percent each year, in 10 years, the annual cost of lost wages will be half a trillion dollars,” the report warned.

A latest study published in The Lancet found that 22 per cent of people with prolonged covid were unable to work due to health problems, and another 45 per cent had to reduce their hours worked.

“Since this report focuses on working-age Americans, we’ll use that group’s labor force participation rate of 75 percent. So, of the 16.3 million working-age Americans with prolonged Covid, we can assume that 12.2 million were in the labor force,” the findings showed.

Using the average US wage of $1,106 per week, the estimated 3 million people out of work due to long-term Covid translates to $168 billion a year in lost earnings.

“This is almost 1 percent of the total US gross domestic product. If the actual number of people out of work is closer to 4 million, that’s a cost of $230 billion,” the report mentions.

In the UK, a quarter of companies cite long-term covid as a major cause of long-term staff absence.

Harvard University economist David Cutler found that 12 to 17 percent of Covid-19 patients still experience three or more symptoms 12 weeks after onset, and that the downsizing of the workforce among those with a significant disability is 70 percent.

Using covid-19 case counts and labor force participation rates, Cutler estimated that 3.5 million people are out of work due to long-standing covid, for a five-year lost wage cost of $1 trillion, or about $200 billion per year.

“Critically, this number does not represent the full economic burden of long-term covid, because it does not include impacts such as lower productivity of people working while sick, significant health care costs incurred by patients, or lost productivity.” of caregivers,” he said. The report.

Cutler estimated that prolonged Covid-related health care and quality-of-life loss cost an additional $544 billion each year.

A recent study suggests that vaccines reduce the risk of prolonged covid by only 15 percent.

“While we don’t yet know the risk of contracting COVID for a long time after repeated infections, a recent study found that each repeated infection increases the likelihood of long-term health consequences,” according to the report.

There are at least five critical government interventions that can reduce the economic burden of long-term covid: better prevention and treatment options, expanded paid sick leave, better workplace accommodations, broader access to disability insurance, and improved data collection. data on the economic effects of the long covid.



(Only the headline and image in this report may have been modified by Business Standard staff; all other content is auto-generated from a syndicated source.)

Dear reader,

Business Standard has always strived to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have broader political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your constant encouragement and feedback on how to improve our offering has only strengthened our resolve and commitment to these ideals. Even during these difficult times stemming from Covid-19, we remain committed to keeping you informed and up-to-date with credible news, authoritative viewpoints, and incisive commentary on relevant current affairs.
We, however, have a request.

As we grapple with the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more so that we can continue to bring you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you who have subscribed to our online content. More subscriptions to our online content can only help us achieve our goals of bringing you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practice the journalism we are committed to.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

digital editor

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.