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Read the latest collective research, media and news relevant to Long COVID from industry experts in healthcare, insurance, policy and strategic communications.  You can browse by our overall areas of focus and the specific topics we study. If you are interested in any studies that you cannot access here, please contact long_covid_initiative@brown.edu.

Is Long COVID disproportionately impacting women?

Months after the first onset of Lauren Nichols’ COVID-19 symptoms in March of 2020, she still had a laundry list of maladies that seemed to grow by the day: constant migraines, histamine rashes, reproductive issues, fevers, vertigo, and gastrointestinal problems so severe that some days she couldn’t even keep water down. Her neurological issues were so intense that one day, she says she was trapped inside of her shower because she couldn’t remember what the door handle was. Other days, she forgot what her hands were.

Patient advocacy groups + Long COVID

Advocacy and support groups are important resources for patients, particularly those navigating chronic or rare conditions. Patient support groups bring together people with similar experiences, such as a common medical condition, to bridge their medical and emotional needs through sharing personal experiences, coping strategies, information about the disease and treatment, and resources. Participation in online patient support groups has been shown to lead to patient empowerment, including being better informed through exchanging information and finding recognition. 

Long COVID + sleep disturbances

Lack of quality sleep, regardless of Long COVID status, takes a toll on the mind and body. Not only can it lead to daytime tiredness, but sleep loss impairs alertness, cognition, and motivation to participate in day-to-day activities. Racking up quality sleep has been a problem for many Long COVID patients. Other Long COVID symptoms – such as depression and anxiety – are associated with sleep disturbances on their own, potentially causing or compounding these sleep troubles.

[UPDATED] The Impact of Long COVID on the Workforce

Recently we posted an article about how Long COVID affects employees and employers. As issues around Long COVID and the workforce continuously emerge, we plan to provide updates to keep the community in the know about the latest data and conversations on this topic. In this post we’ve provide a brief review of recent studies estimating the impact on the labor shortage.

What are the impacts of Long COVID on mental health?

Although there is limited data to measure the impact of Long COVID on mental health, studies are emerging particularly around anxiety and depression, which are among the most common mental health diagnoses for Long COVID patients.

Long COVID + Children

As more research becomes available on the topic of Long COVID in adults, evidence of Long COVID in children remains preliminary.

Is there a billing code for Long COVID?

The answer is YES. Effective October 1, 2021, a new ICD-10 code became available for the diagnosis of Long COVID: U09.9, Post COVID-19 condition, unspecified. This code will now be used instead of the code B94.8 (sequelae of other specified infectious and parasitic disease), which had been used previously. 

Vaccination + Long COVID

Although the WHO released its first clinical definition of Long COVID in October of 2021, there is still no definitive agreement on what it is or how to officially diagnose it–a common pain point for clinicians, patients and insurers alike. The majority of scientific literature cites the CDC’s definition, often describing a syndrome with persisting symptoms at least 4 weeks following a COVID-19 diagnosis. 

Is Long COVID considered a disability?

Anyone who has had COVID-19 can potentially become a Long COVID patient, even individuals who had mild cases. As a result, employees affected by Long COVID could become one of the largest groups of employees requiring accommodations and inquiring about disability insurance.

How is Long COVID impacting the workforce?

Using recommended strategies for a safe working environment to prevent COVID-19 infections and transmission is the best way employers can help prevent Long COVID in their employees.

For inquiries related to the Long COVID Initiative, please contact long_covid_initiative@brown.edu