People with ME/CFS are already drowning. Australia must prepare now for the forthcoming economic, health and social impacts of Long COVID.
Our March 2022
A tsunami of post-viral disease is about to hit Australia. People with ME/CFS are already drowning. Australia must prepare now for the forthcoming economic, health and social impacts of Long COVID. Read the State of the Nation report now.
Emerge Australia recognises the close links between ME/CFS and Long COVID. Scientific studies indicate that the most frequent shared symptoms of people with Long COVID and people with ME/CFS are post-exertional malaise (PEM), cognitive difficulties and fatigue.
There are approximately 20 different sets of diagnostic criteria for ME/CFS which have been developed over the history of the disease. This has created inconsistency in research, as different diagnostic criteria result in participant samples which are not easily compared between studies.
For years, our health system has systemically neglected and failed to meet the needs of those with ME/CFS. If the number of Australians with post-viral disease more than doubles, health services could be overwhelmed and our economy smashed – ME/CFS alone costs an estimated $14.8bn a year in healthcare and lost productivity.
Our policymakers must prepare now for the coming economic, health and social impacts of ME/CFS, Long COVID and other post-viral diseases.
250,000 Australians already live with ME/CFS and Deakin University predicts up to 325,000 more may develop Long COVID in the coming months. The human cost of post-viral diseases is obviously paramount, but the economic cost is also potentially devastating.
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