About 1.1 million Britons have reported having long Covid symptoms, figures from the UK’s Office for National Statistics (ONS) revealed.
Of the 1.1 million people from private households, 674,000 were thought to have symptoms that affected their daily life, with 196,000 estimated to have their ability to undertake everyday tasks limited a lot, Xinhua news agency quoted the ONS as saying on Thursday.
The ONS survey asked people if they had such symptoms as fatigue, muscle pain, and difficulty concentrating over a four-week period ending March 6.
The latest data include those who were self-reported, rather than clinically diagnosed.
Ben Humberstone, head of Health and Life Events at the ONS, told Sky News that the agency was “surprised” by the numbers, adding that “this isn’t like other diseases”.
“Two thirds of those with self-reported long Covid told us it’s limiting their day-to-day activities so they’re not able to do the things they would’ve been able to do before,” Humberstone said.
“And when you think this is most prevalent in people of working ages, that’s going to have a real impact on the world of work, childcare and things day to day we take for granted.”
The UK’s overall coronavirus caseload and death toll stood at 4,364,541 and 127,006, respectively.
While the country’s caseload is the sixth highest in the world, the death toll is the fifth largest.
Nearly 31 million people have been given the first jab of the coronavirus vaccine so far in the UK, according to the official figures.