The ONS has released statistics confirming that an estimated 2 million people (3.1% of the UK population) self-reported experiencing long Covid symptoms as of 1 May 2022.
Long Covid symptoms are defined as those symptoms continuing for more than four weeks after the first suspected coronavirus infection that could not be explained by anything else.
Of those self-reporting Long Covid, 1.4 million stated that the condition had negatively impacted on their day-to-day activities and 398,000 said they had been “limited a lot” in their ability to go about their day-to-day activities.
There were a number of common symptoms self-reported, with these including:
- Fatigue (affecting 55%)
- Shortness of breath (32%)
- Cough (23%), and;
- Muscle ache (23%)
Given the above statistics, employers should be mindful of the potential impact of Long Covid on the workplace, especially given the recent Employment Tribunal case of Burke v Turning Point Scotland. This saw the employment tribunal conclude that an employee with long COVID symptoms was disabled within the meaning of section 6 of the Equality Act 2010.