Thousands of Americans have likely left the workforce because of long COVID.

Jenna Dreier stopped working after developing debilitating long COVID symptoms. 
Thousands of Americans have likely left the workforce for the same reason. 
She had disability insurance, but the company claimed she had inadequate proof to qualify for long-term payouts.

Jenna Dreier, 55, never thought she’d be forced to stop working before retirement age. But as a professional insurance agent, she prepared for the scenario, just in case.

Dreier, who asked that her real identity and employer remain private but have been verified by Insider, worked at one of the biggest insurance companies in the US for nearly seven years.

When the Texas resident signed up for benefits, she bought into a disability policy offered by the company. As someone who has sold different types of insurance for years, Dreier was acutely aware of the surprising amount of Americans who need some sort of short-term disability help at some point in their careers. One in four, for instance, suffer from some sort of disability. 

“I said, ‘I’d rather be on the safe side in case something ever happens,'” Dreier told Insider. 

And then something did: She got COVID. 

She contracted the virus in January, and is still suffering 11 months later. After experiencing a mild case of COVID, Dreier became exhausted all the time, perennially nauseous, and “even small exertions” sent her to the emergency room, she said. 

“When I went to the emergency room, each time it was uncontrollable nausea and vomiting to the point where I was dry heaving and dehydrated,” she said. “If I try to sit up for more than 20 minutes, I feel really, really ill.” 

The description matches “long COVID,” which happens when someone with COVID-19 develops symptoms that linger for an extended period, according to the CDC. The CDC says symptoms could last weeks or months, and they can go away and come back.

Much of long COVID is a mystery to healthcare professionals — why it happens, how to treat it — but a growing body of evidence shows that it has affected millions of Americans. Symptoms often include severe fatigue and “brain fog,” which makes basic functions prohibitively difficult for those who suffer from it. Dreier is one of  the thousands of Americans who have likely left the workforce because of long COVID, which costs US workers between $60 billion and $100 billion in lost …read more

Source:: Business Insider

      

Meet a woman suffering from long COVID who quit her job, spent $11,000 on treatments, but still can’t get disability insurance

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