Whatever your standpoint on whether the pandemic is over, or what “living with the virus” should mean, it is clear some manifestation of Covid-19 will be with us for some time to come. Not least for the estimated 1.7 million people in the UK living with Long Covid.
This is a now a large, well-documented, convergent cluster of clear physiological symptoms, and it is common to every part of the globe affected by Covid-19. Many sufferers are now disabled and deprived of their former passions, while some are unable to resume their former professions. Doctors and scientists the world over now consider this a recognised part of the Sars-CoV-2 symptom profile.
We thought that the number of Long Covid cases developing might be lower when most cases were breakthrough cases in the vaccinated, or infections in vaccinated or partially vaccinated children. Sadly, far from any subsidence in new Long Covid cases, the big, ongoing caseloads of the Delta, Omicron and BA.2 waves have brought a large cohort of new sufferers.
These waves have disproportionately affected primary and secondary schools, and many of the new sufferers are children.
In this Guardian article, Danny Altmann discusses why a failure to recognise the need for a response to Long Covid could be a blunder we rue for decades to come