"Long COVID", in which COVID sufferers continue to have prolonged neurological and other symptoms for long periods after reaching their first illness, can be considered a disability under federal law, the Federal Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Justice said Monday .
People whose long COVID qualifies as disabled, sometimes referred to as "long-distance carriers", are "entitled to the same protection against discrimination as all other persons with disabilities" under federal law. , says the joint statement from the agencies.
The statement cites the Federal Americans with Disabilities Act, the Rehabilitation Act of 1
The statement cites the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. such as people with long COVID having a range of new or ongoing symptoms that may persist for weeks or months after being infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 and These may be exacerbated by physical or mental activity.
These symptoms include fatigue or tiredness, difficulty thinking or concentrating, shortness of breath or difficulty breaking or headaches, including in the statement. Mental disability can significantly limit major life activities, and this should be widely interpreted under federal law "and does not require extensive analysis."
However, long COVID should not automatically be considered a disability, it says. "An individual assessment is necessary to determine whether a person's long-term COVID condition or symptoms significantly limit a major life activity," the statement said. "CDC and health experts are working to better understand long COVID."
It is said that because COVID can long be considered a disability, organizations may need to change the way they work to benefit those affected. Reasonable modifications including modification procedures so that a customer who finds it too tiring to stand in line can announce their presence and sit down without losing their place in the line.
The statement contains a list of federal resources for people with long COVID symptoms.