There are 230,559 people in Ireland suffering with conditions associated with long COVID, a new survey by Ireland Thinks has found.

Some 36,889 of these people are impacted a lot in their daily activities by these symptoms.

The Ireland Thinks poll shows data of self-declared incidence of long COVID in Ireland.

Independent TD Denis Naughten, says that the high number of patients presenting to hospitals with these symptoms are putting further strain on already stretched resources.

'It could lead to the collapse of health service.'

“The reality is that such a large number of long COVID patients presenting to our hospitals with complex health conditions at a time when the system is already overwhelmed, could lead to the collapse of health service”, he said.

“We cannot just sleepwalk into a crisis of chronic illness which will push people waiting on treatments since before the pandemic even further down already horrendous waiting lists."

Record numbers of people have been left waiting on trolleys in Irish hospitals this week, which has put the ambulance service 'at breaking point' and spurred talks of striking among nurses.

The Roscommon-Galway TD is calling for a "coordinated response" from the government to alleviate the pressure on the healthcare system.

Impact on lives

Last month, Ireland’s Health Protection Surveillance Centre revealed that 69% of adults in Ireland have been infected by the virus.

Long COVID does not currently have a defined treatment pathway.

The data shows that 6% of adults in Ireland have self-reported symptoms of long COVID in excess of 12 weeks, with a further 3% of adults self-reporting the onset of symptoms for less than 12 weeks.

Long COVID symptoms impact a lot on daily activities of 16% of people with long COVID with a further 63% stating that the symptoms are having some impact on their daily lives.

Main image shows a long COVID patient doing breathing training. Picture by: Friso Gentsch/dpa/Alamy Live News

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