Information on post COVID-19 condition

After being infected with the coronavirus, some people still suffer from symptoms weeks or months later. On this website you will find information on post-COVID-19 condition.

Explanation of term

We refer to the lasting effects of a coronavirus infection as “post COVID-19 condition” in keeping with the terminology used by the World Health Organization (WHO). We also use the term “long-term effects of COVID-19” to refer to the same thing.

The lasting effects of a COVID-19 infection are frequently also referred to as “long COVID”.

What is post COVID-19 condition?

Post COVID-19 condition can occur after infection with the coronavirus.
The WHO defines post COVID-19 condition as:

The illness that occurs in people who have a history of probable or confirmed coronavirus infection,

  • usually within three months from the onset of COVID-19,
  • with symptoms and effects that have lasted for at least two months, and
  • which cannot be explained by an alternative diagnosis.

Most symptoms of post COVID-19 condition affect everyday functioning. Symptoms may persist after an acute COVID-19 infection or fluctuate or relaps over time.

The most common symptoms of post COVID-19 condition are:

  • Extreme tiredness and stress intolerance
  • Shortness of breath and breathing problems
  • Concentration and memory problems

Other symptoms may also occur, such as:

  • Headache
  • Coughing
  • Loss of sense of smell and taste
  • Sleep disorders and anxiety
  • Muscle fatigue/muscle pain
  • Chest pains
  • Skin rashes

Vaccination and post COVID-19 condition

Studies show that if they are infected with coronavirus, vaccinated people are better protected than unvaccinated people against post COVID-19 condition. However, it is not currently proven whether vaccination is also effective in treating an existing post COVID-19 condition.

What to do if you have post COVID-19 condition

If you have questions about post COVID-19 condition, your first port of call is your family doctor, who will refer you to a specialist for further examination if necessary.

Costs of treatment

The costs of necessary medical examinations and treatment for post COVID-19 condition are covered by your health insurance.


On the page Consulting hours and rehabilitation treatments, attending doctors will find a list of specialised consultation sessions and rehabilitation programmes in Switzerland.

You'll also find further information on post COVID-19 condition on the following websites:


Altea, the long COVID network, is dedicated to dialogue around long-term effects of COVID-19. The website is aimed at those affected and their families, 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

Long Covid Switzerland is an association established by long COVID sufferers to support other sufferers. 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 and French)

Long Covid Switzerland also has a website aimed at children and adolescents with long COVID and their parents.

To the Long Covid Kids Switzerland website (in German only)


RAFAEL is an 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 only)

Verband Covid Langzeitfolgen

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

To the Verband Covid Langzeitfolgen website (in German only)

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. The competent cantonal IV/AS office will then examine what support is appropriate in conjunction with your employer.

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 cover 80% of your insured 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 protracted period, 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.

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

Further information

The FOPH response

What’s the FOPH doing? Information on our response to the emergence of post COVID-19 condition.

Consulting hours and rehabilitation treatments

Overview of specialist consultation sessions and rehabilitation options for more detailed clarification and treatment of post COVID-19 condition.

Last modification 09.08.2023

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

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