According to the US Census Bureau, of the 127 million Americans who have had COVID-19, 28% developed long COVID.
Long COVID refers to the condition in which someone infected with COVID-19 experiences long-term health effects that last for months or years as a result.
Data collected through the Bureau’s Household Pulse Survey in December 2022 reveals that long COVID affects people of various racial backgrounds differently. The Bureau defined long COVID as having COVID-19 symptoms that last for three months or longer.
Fifteen percent of Asian Americans with long COVID experienced severe symptoms, the highest severe rate of any racial group. White Americans had the highest rates of both moderate and minimal long COVID symptoms, at 24% and 9% respectively.
Long COVID symptoms vary from person to person and can affect the respiratory, cardiovascular, neurological, and digestive systems. The most reported include extreme fatigue, fever, difficulty breathing, chest pain, heart palpitations, brain fog, depression, and anxiety. Some people have also experienced menstrual cycles changes as a result of COVID-19.
The medical community’s understanding of long COVID’s causes, risk factors, and effects is still developing. However, the Department of Health and Human Services predicted in November 2022 that people of color would be more affected by long COVID due to their higher chances of getting infected with COVID-19 and decreased access to health care.
See what the data says about long COVID by gender and by age.
To get a comprehensive look at health in the US, visit the 2023 State of the Union in Numbers.
While the data was collected in December 2022, the Bureau asked people whether they had experienced long COVID at any point in time, not only at the time of the survey.
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