US President Joe Biden signs a proclamation on the anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), as (LR) artist Tyree Brown, Sen. Pat Leahy (D-VT), former MP Tony Coelho (D-CA), House of Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD), U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) watch in the Rose Garden of the White House on July 26, 2021 in Washington, DC.
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President Joe Biden announced Monday that some Americans who have long-term effects from Covid may be eligible for federal government resources and protection for disabilities.
The announcement came as the President celebrated the 31st anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act in a speech in the Rose Garden of the White House with Vice President Kamala Harris. It also happens that the long-term symptoms of the virus, what some refer to as “long covid”, are becoming a major public health problem.
“We are bringing agencies together to ensure that Americans with long Covid who have a disability have access to the rights and resources that are due under the Disability Act,” Biden said during his remarks.
Under the guidance of the Ministry of Health and Social Affairs and the Ministry of Justice, Covid can for a long time be considered a disability under federal civil rights laws if it “significantly restricts one or more important life activities”.
This means that individuals with prolonged symptoms of Covid leading to disability are entitled to resources and protection from discrimination under state disability laws.
These protections include providing extra time for a test for students with difficulty concentrating, assisting with refueling at a gas station for a customer with joint or muscle pain, and allowing a person who is dizzy to be accompanied by a companion animal. Corporations and state or local governments may also need to make other changes to accommodate a person’s long-term Covid symptoms that lead to disability.
An individual assessment is required to determine whether a person with long covid is eligible for such protections and resources according to the guidelines.
Long Covid describes a wide range of new or persistent symptoms that can follow four or more weeks after a Covid infection, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. These include tiredness and exhaustion, joint or muscle pain, loss of taste or smell and fever.
According to the CDC, some people can also damage multiple organs such as the heart, lungs, kidneys, skin and brain. But long-term Covid symptoms are inconsistent and it is not known how many people have the condition.
The Biden government has also released new guidance that addresses the needs of children with long covid who may be disabled. The guide issued by the Ministry of Education describes how schools and public institutions can provide services to children and students with long covid that leads to a disability.
Other efforts to assist Americans with long covid include new guidelines from HHS outlining community-based resources for people with the condition and a new Department of Labor website that includes resources for workers with long covid, such as: B. Information on employee benefits.
Most people who contract Covid recover within a few weeks, but reports of long-term Covid symptoms are increasing among Americans.
Research published by FAIR Health last month found that around 23% of nearly 2 million Covid patients developed at least one “persistent or new” disease more than four weeks after their initial diagnosis.