Corona — economical consequences

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  1. 9. Quarter of UK employers cite long COVID as driving absences — survey
  2. Quarter of UK employers cite long COVID as driving absences - survey
  3. 10. Nederlandse gezondheidseconoom vreest kosten longcovid 180 miljard EUR per jaar.

1. Brookings report — New data shows long Covid is keeping as many as 4 million people out of work

https://www.brookings.edu/research/new-data-shows-long-covid-is-keeping-as-many-as-4-million-people-out-of-work/

The Census Bureau’s June to July 2022 HPS survey found that 16.3 million people (around 8%) of working-age Americans currently have long Covid.

Of those, 2 to 4 million are out of work due to long Covid. The annual cost of those lost wages alone is around $170 billion a year (and potentially as high as $230 billion).

The Minneapolis Fed study found that 50% of respondents had recovered from long Covid. If we exclude that 50%, we are left with around 17 million people who may currently have long Covid — very near the HPS estimate of 16.3 million.

The Minneapolis Fed study cited above found that 25.9% people with long Covid have had their work “impacted” (meaning that they are either out of work or working reduced hours).

A survey from the United Kingdom’s Trades Union Congress (TUC) found that 20% of people with long Covid were not working, and an additional 16% were working reduced hours.

A study published in The Lancet, found that 22% of people with long Covid were unable to work due to ill health, and another 45% had to reduce hours worked.

This is consistent with the experiences of comparable economies. For example, a Bank of England representative recently stated that labor force participation has dropped by around 1.3%.

Using the average U.S. wage of $1,106 per week, the estimated 3 million people out of work due to long Covid translates to $168 billion a year in lost earnings. This is nearly 1% of the total U.S. gross domestic product. If the true number of people out of work is closer to 4 million, that is a $230 billion cost.

Harvard University economist David Cutler arrived at a nearly identical number using a different methodology.

Unfortunately, the latest news on these is not good. While doctors and researchers learn more about the underlying causes of long Covid every day, there is no standardized, generally accepted treatment for it. A recent study suggests vaccines reduce the risk of long Covid by only 15%. And while we don’t yet know the risk of contracting long Covid after repeat infections, one recent study found that every repeat infection increases the probability of long-term health consequences.

Together, these three factors suggest that if long Covid patients don’t begin recovering at greater rates, the economic burden will continue to rise.

2. Federal Reserve

“the share of working-age adults reporting serious difficulty remembering, concentrating, or making decisions has risen steadily since the start of the pandemic. Fourth, growing shares of women and of non–college graduates report simultaneously (i) being out of the labor force due to disability and (ii) experiencing these cognitive difficulties. Non-participation attributed to disability was declining steadily in the years leading up to the pandemic, but that downward trend has stalled. Long COVID is likely one reason why.”

https://www.federalreserve.gov/econres/notes/feds-notes/long-covid-cognitive-impairment-and-the-stalled-decline-in-disability-rates-20220805.html

3. Bank of England: “The surge in women not working due to long term sickness is now at a 30 year high”

https://www.bankofengland.co.uk/speech/2022/may/michael-saunders-speech-at-the-resolution-foundation-event

Women more than men? Yes: “Factors associated with being less likely to report full recovery at 1 year were female sex (odds ratio 0·68 [95% CI 0·46–0·99])” https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lanres/article/PIIS2213-2600(22)00127-8/fulltext

Less than 1 in 3 (!) hospitalized Covid-19 patients in the UK were fully recovered after a year according to a study in The Lancet: https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lanres/article/PIIS2213-2600(22)00127-8/fulltext

And this is only one of many studies with this kind of conclusions. The west is digging it’s own social-economical graveyard with many people needing long term medical support and unable to work or work fulltime.

Some western politicians start to understand this, like the Finnish Minister of Family Affairs and Social Services: “There is a threat that Finland will see the emergence of the largest, or one of the largest, new groups of chronic diseases, and that not only too many adults will suffer from a long-term COVID-19, but at worst also children”. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-finland-long-covid/long-covid-could-become-finlands-largest-chronic-disease-warns-minister-idUSKBN2JH14W

4. IQ

We cannot close our eyes for the impact of an infection on our IQ.

Many studies show a direct link between IQ and annual income and GDP. E.g.: “raising a nation’s IQ by 10 points is estimated to add between 0.62% and 1.6% to a nation’s annual growth rate of GDP. “ https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2862754

How is this related to Covid?
“participants who were infected with SARS-CoV-2 also showed on average a greater cognitive decline between the two time points” https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-022-04569-5

“Cognitive impairment as a result of severe COVID-19 is similar to that sustained between 50 and 70 years of age and is the equivalent to losing 10 IQ points” <https://www.cam.ac.uk/research/news/cognitive-impairment-from-severe-covid-19-equivalent-to-20-years-of-ageing-study-finds

“Neuroimaging research suggests that even mild cases of COVID-19 leave a lasting mark on the brain”
“people who had been infected with COVID-19 showed a loss of brain volume even when the disease was not severe enough to require hospitalization.”
”Finally, researchers also investigated changes in performance on cognitive tasks and found that those who had contracted COVID-19 were slower in processing information, relative to those who had not.” https://www.psypost.org/2021/10/neuroimaging-research-suggests-that-even-mild-cases-of-covid-19-leave-a-lasting-mark-on-the-brain-61938

5. A cause of America’s labor shortage: Millions with long COVID

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/long-covid-labor-market-missing-workers/#app

6. UK Long Covid ‘could cost UK around £2,500,000,000 a year’

https://metro.co.uk/2021/02/10/long-covid-could-cost-uk-around-2500000000-a-year-14050266/?ito=cbshare

7. 46% heeft 3 maand na besmetting minstens één symptoom.

https://www.sciensano.be/sites/default/files/report_final_edited_nl.pdf

8. Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce

9. Quarter of UK employers cite long COVID as driving absences — survey

10. Nederlandse gezondheidseconoom vreest kosten longcovid 180 miljard EUR per jaar.

https://twitter.com/NPORadio1/status/1567878876428210176

11. Soumya Swaminathan, Chief Scientist of the WHO (30/08/22)

https://twitter.com/doctorsoumya/status/1564649057599078401