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Frequency and impact of longer-term symptoms following COVID-19 in Canadian adults Published: ()


Highlights

Some people continue to experience symptoms after the acute phase of COVID-19 has ended. These longer-term symptoms are known as:

The Government of Canada developed the Canadian COVID-19 Antibody and Health Survey (CCAHS), to find out more about people’s longer-term symptoms. The CCAHS covers the period since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic until August 31, 2022. The CCAHS surveyed a random sample of Canadian adults between April 1 and August 31, 2022. The questionnaire asked about new or continuing symptoms 3 months or more after a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19.

14.8%

of adults with a confirmed or suspected infection, experienced longer-term COVID-19 symptoms

47.3%

of adults that experienced longer-term COVID-19 symptoms, experienced symptoms for a year or longer

21.3%

of adults that experienced longer-term COVID-19 symptoms, said that their symptoms often or always limited their daily activities

The survey revealed that 14.8% of adults with a confirmed or suspected infection, experienced longer-term symptoms. Longer-term symptoms were more common among females (18%) than males (11.6%), and among those who reported severe symptoms when they first got sick (36.4%).

Among adults with longer-term symptoms, the most common were:

Almost half (47.3%) experienced symptoms for a year or longer, and 21.3% said that their symptoms often or always limited their daily activities.

Among adults with longer-term symptoms who were employed or attending school, approximately three-quarters (74.1%) missed some work or school due to their symptoms. On average, they missed 20 days.

The new results presented here are consistent with results from other surveys and international evidence.

Other initiatives about longer-term symptoms

This release is the first in a suite of products related to this survey. We’ll be releasing other products in Winter/Spring 2023 to further our knowledge about longer-term COVID-19 symptoms.

The Government of Canada is trying to better understand and address the longer-term health impacts of COVID-19. In addition to the CCAHS, other efforts include investments in research through the:

For more information, please visit our post COVID-19 condition page.

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