Pressley and Beyer urge CDC to collect Long COVID prevalence data
Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley (MA-07) and Congressman Don Beyer (VA-08) are urging the CDC to publicly report Long COVID prevalence findings, including disaggregated demographics.
Publicly releasing this critical data will help lawmakers and researchers better understand Long COVID, the depth of its impact on public health, and ensure that resources are available to support those who suffer from it.
Long COVID, also called post-COVID conditions and post-acute sequelae of SARS CoV-2 infection, is a serious illness that can affect the function of multiple organs months after a person has contracted COVID- 19. According to the CDC, people living with Long COVID may experience a combination of symptoms, ranging from fatigue and brain fog to muscle aches and diarrhea to difficulty breathing and heart palpitations.
“[I]It is essential that Congress and the American public can gain insight into current data and emerging trends, including an overview of the wide range of symptoms that individuals may experience, broken down by demographic groups, in order to inform the development policies and protect public health,” the lawmakers wrote in their letter to CDC Director Rochelle Walensky.
Lawmakers cited preliminary studies indicating that women are particularly vulnerable to long COVID and noted the disparate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on black, Latino and Indigenous communities, warning that long COVID could reflect this. tendency.
“To fully confront the ongoing pandemic, Congress needs disaggregated demographic data on the prevalence of Long COVID,” the lawmakers continued. “The CDC should release findings on race, ethnicity, age, gender, prior disability, and other demographic characteristics. People across the country are experiencing long-term symptoms of COVID-19, and Congress deserves answers about the scale and scope of this crisis.
The full text of the letter is available here.