A small percentage of employees with covid-19 workers’ compensation claims in the early days of the pandemic received additional medical care in the months after their diagnosis because of “long covid,” according to a study.
The Workers Compensation Research Institute on Thursday released a study that found 7% of workers with covid-19 claims developed “long covid” and that “long covid” was most common among workers who were hospitalized during the early stages of the illness.
The study found that among workers who received medical care during their infected period, about 20% received “long covid” treatment, and about 33% of workers who received both medical care and compensation were similarly treated for lingering symptoms.
About 74% of workers treated early for the virus in intensive care units also received long-term covid treatment.
Workers̵7; claims for “long covid” received higher-than-average medical payments, compensation benefits and longer durations of temporary disability than covid-19 claims that did not involve “long covid,” the researchers reported.
Medical payments in comp cases also increased when accounting for “long covid,” with average payments for claims involving “long covid” rising above $25,000 while average medical payments for claims not involving “long covid” were around $3,000 , according to the study.
The study determined that the majority of medical costs were linked to workers who were hospitalized or admitted to intensive care units during the early stages of the infection.
Average costs for these types of claims rose above $50,000 for hospitalized workers and above $150,000 for those in intensive care.
The study analyzed cases of covid-19 where the first date of infection was between 1 March 2020 and 30 September 2020.