Coronavirus: post COVID-19 condition

After contracting the coronavirus, some people often experience consequences of the disease for weeks or months. On this website you will find a range of information on post-COVID-19 condition.

Explanation of term

We refer to the lasting effects of a coronavirus infection as the “post COVID-19 condition” in keeping with the language regime of the World Health Organisation (WHO). On this website we also use the term “long-term effects of COVID-19”.

The lasting effects of a COVID-19 infection are frequently also referred to as “long COVID” on other platforms and in the media, for example. In such cases, the same thing is meant.

Post COVID-19 condition (long-term effects of COVID-19)

The long-term effects of COVID-19 mainly include the following symptoms:

  • Over-tiredness and exhaustion
  • Shortness of breath and breathing problems
  • Cognitive disorders
  • Headache
  • Coughing
  • Loss of sense of smell and taste
  • Sleeplessness
  • Muscle fatigue/muscle pain
  • Chest pains
  • Intermittent fever
  • Skin rashes
  • Problems after physical exertion

The most frequent symptoms are tiredness, shortness of breath and breathing problems, and cognitive disorders. How the symptoms occur and for how long varies widely.

What to do if you have post COVID-19 condition (long-term effects of COVID-19)

In most cases the symptoms disappear by themselves. If you’re worried about your symptoms or if they are interfering with your everyday life, contact your doctor to discuss what to do.


The first person to talk to if you have any questions about long-term effects of COVID-19 is always your family doctor. They’re the person who knows most about your health and medical history. Below you will also find three websites with additional information on long-term effects of COVID-19.

The Altea platform is dedicated to dialogue around long-term effects of COVID-19. The community is aimed at those affected and their families, medical professionals and researchers. On the Altea website you’ll find information including tips on dealing with the symptoms more effectively, a list of consultation sessions and treatments, and a blog with articles on the latest science, legal matters and new developments.

To the Altea network website

Long Covid Switzerland is an association established by people affected to support other people affected. For example the website provides links to long covid surgeries in the cantons and tips on symptom relief.

To the Long Covid Switzerland website (in German only)

Verband Covid Langzeitfolgen is an association dealing with legal questions around the long-term effects of coronavirus infection.

To the Verband Long Covid Schweiz website

RAFAEL is the first French language interactive information and exchange platform on the long-term effects of COVID-19. It is a digital platform that includes a chatbot which answers questions and provides information on the symptoms of long COVID for the general public and health professionals.

To the RAFAEL website (in French)

Costs of treatment

The costs of medically necessary treatment for long-term effects of COVID-19 will be covered by your health insurance.

What to do about loss of earnings

The arrangements for compensation for loss of earnings on the basis of long-term effects of COVID-19 depend on your employment contract and insurance situation. If you are unable to work for a protracted period you may have to register with the federal disability benefits authority.

Compensation for employees

If you’re employed your employer is obliged to continue paying you. The period for which you will continue to receive your pay depends on whether your employer has cover for daily sickness benefits. This will generally be the case.
Most daily benefits insurance plans entitle you to 80% of your pay for 720 days. If your employer doesn’t have cover for daily sickness benefits, the period for which you continue to receive your pay will depend on your years of service. In your first year of service you will receive full pay for three weeks; after that the period is extended depending on your years of service. The arrangements vary from canton to canton.

Compensation for self-employed people

If you’re self-employed the crucial question is whether you have taken out insurance for daily sickness benefits, and what this covers. You might also have loss of earnings (disability) insurance that will pay you an annuity once your daily benefit cover has run out.

In the case of protracted incapacity for work: registering with the federal disability benefits authority

If there are indications that you will not be fit for work again for a long time, it’s important to register with the federal disability benefits authority (IV/AS) in good time. Contact the IV/AS office in your canton of residence. This early registration requires that you have been unfit for work for at least 30 days without interruption or have had repeated shorter absences in the last 12 months.

Immediately after you contact the IV/AS office they will consider a formal application and measures enabling you to keep your job or be integrated into a new workplace. These phases of early intervention last a maximum of 12 months. After that a decision will be made on possible further measures (for example resilience and rehabilitation training, a work trial, job coaching or retraining).

A claim for an IV/AS pension will be examined if the IV/AS authority's integration efforts do not result in the desired success. You can draw an IV/AS pension at the earliest after one year of at least 40% incapacity for work, and six months after your IV/AS application. When examining entitlement to a pension the authority assesses on a case-by-case basis what specific complaints have led to the restriction in earning capacity. It is not yet clear how the various effects of long-term COVID-19 will be classified for insurance and benefits purposes.

You will find more information on the Verband Covid Langzeitfolgen website (in German).

Further information

Disease, symptoms, treatment

Information on Covid-19, the symptoms and the range of illness severity as well as the origin of the coronavirus

Last modification 03.05.2022

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Federal Office of Public Health FOPH
Infoline Coronavirus
Tel. +41 58 463 00 00

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