More than 1 million people are fighting long COVID

More than 1 million people are fighting long COVID

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More than 1 million people are fighting long COVID in the UK.

According to estimates over a million people in the UK are thought to be fighting self-reported long COVID. Data provided by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has shown a growing number of people are fighting long COVID.

The ONS said: “An estimated 1.1 million people (1.7% of the population) experienced self-reported long COVID in the 4 weeks to 5 September 2021.”

For a person to be suffering from long COVID they need to have symptoms that have lasted for more than four weeks since they first suspected they were infected with Covid.

According to the ONS, over 400,000 people are thought to have been suffering from long COVID for more than a year.

The ONS published their latest figures on Thursday, October 7. The ONS said: “There has been a notable increase in the number of people with self-reported long Covid who were first infected (or suspected they were infected) less than eight weeks previously, from 50,000 (5.2% of those with self-reported long Covid) at August 1 2021 to 132,000 (12.2%) at September 5 2021.

“These new cases of self-reported long Covid follow a period of increased incidence of Covid-19 infections in the UK during July 2021.”

The most common symptoms are fatigue, shortness of breath, loss of smell and difficulty concentrating.

The ONS added: “As a proportion of the UK population, prevalence of self-reported long Covid was greatest in people aged 35 to 69 years, females, people living in more deprived areas, those working in health or social care, and those with another activity-limiting health condition or disability.

“Compared with the previous month, prevalence of self-reported long Covid was notably higher among young adults aged 17 to 24 years and people working in the hospitality sector.”

The Open University’s Kevin McConway is an emeritus professor of applied statistics. He believes that the latest figures reveal that long COVID is a major problem. He said: “As recently as July, people’s infections were leading to symptoms that went on for four weeks or more, and in many cases considerably more.

“I see no reason to believe that this has stopped, and since overall infection rates are now at levels not much different from those in July, we’re likely to see increased numbers reporting long Covid in next month’s ONS bulletin and probably for more bulletins going into the future.”

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Written by

Alex Glenn

Originally from the UK, Alex is based in Almeria and is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at