Governments around the world are recommending avoiding Long Covid by preventing COVID-19 infections.
Long Covid is the name given to more than 200 symptoms that can follow acute COVID-19. Long Covid can impact daily functioning and symptoms can last for weeks, months or years1. The causes of Long Covid are unclear, but viral persistence and immune dysfunction might be implicated in the condition2.
Governments around the world, some of which previously relied on a vaccines-only strategy, have been updating their guidance to the public and now commonly recommend prevention of COVID-19 as the best way to avoid Long Covid. Many now recommend the use of masks or respirators in indoor spaces and clean air policies in addition to vaccination.
The John Snow Project has surveyed a handful of countries and territories for their official advice on preventing Long Covid. These countries and territories are some of those that advise on how to avoid Long Covid specifically and recommend the following measures to do so. While many other countries, such as France3 and the Netherlands4, advise on the use of some or all these measures to avoid COVID-19, this survey highlights some of the territories that offer specific advice on the prevention of Long Covid, which is a growing health concern5-7.
The public should be paying attention to this shift in messaging and be aware that, while they may alter the risk, vaccination and prior infection do not prevent Long Covid5.
|Vaccines / Boosters
|Masks / Respirators
|Clean Air / Ventilation
|World Health Organization8
*Recommended while waiting for vaccination
**Advised to avoid poorly ventilated, crowded spaces