Economics/Class Relations

Long covid is destroying careers, leaving economic distress in its wake

By Christopher Rowland Washington Post

Before the coronavirus ruined her plans, Tiffany Patino expected to be back at work by now. She and her boyfriend intended to move out of a basement in suburban Maryland, where his grandmother lets them stay for free, so they could raise their infant son in a place of their own. Maybe get a new car.

But Patino got sick with covid-19 more than a year ago. Instead of getting better, chronic exhaustion and other symptoms persisted, delaying her return to a restaurant job and swamping her goal of financial independence. After reaching what she calls her “hell-iversary” last month, Patino remains unable to rejoin the workforce. With no income of her own, she’s exhausted, racked with pain, short of breath, forgetful, bloated, swollen, depressed.

At 28 years old, she can barely take her baby to the playground. “I go on a walk, and I have to use the stroller like a walker,” she said. “Whatever life I have right now, it’s more like surviving. I’m not living my dream. I’m living a nightmare.”

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