Taoiseach questioned on long Covid care

In Health, News, Posts by Topic by Denis Naughten

Here are the links to the data behind my contribution:


  • Based on an analysis that I performed there are 336,451 adults nationally who are likely to be suffering from some of the 200 medical conditions associated with long Covid.


  • Based on the PQ below 0.81% of Enhanced Illness Benefit claimants of over 10 weeks went on to receive another illness related payment for at least 2 weeks, meeting the emerging scientific criteria for long Covid.

Research published last month on blood donors by Ireland’s Health Protection Surveillance Centre, which indicates that 69% of adults in Ireland have been infected by the virus.

This equates to 2,649,219 people. Based on this with a incidence of 0.81% of (welfare claimants) those infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus this would equate to 21,459 people who were unable to work due to long Covid.




For Written Answer on : 15/09/2022
Question Number(s): 252 Question Reference(s): 45310/22
Department: Social Protection
Asked by: Denis Naughten T.D.


To ask the Minister for Social Protection the number of claims submitted and the number of persons who have received enhanced illness benefit for Covid-19; the number of persons who were in payment for two, four, six, eight and ten weeks, respectively; the number of persons who transferred to illness benefit after the ten-week payment period had expired; the number of these claims that were in payment for more than two weeks; the number that were transferred to disability allowance after the ten-week payment period had expired; the number of these claims that were in payment for more than two weeks; the number of such claims that were rejected or pending; and if she will make a statement on the matter.


Enhanced Illness Benefit (EIB) is a form of Illness Benefit that is payable to self-employed persons or an employee who is told to self-isolate or has been diagnosed with Covid-19.  It is important to note that a person may have received Enhanced Illness Benefit on more than one occasion since the payment was introduced, and thus have more than one claim for Enhanced illness Benefit.  The number of claims received and the individuals claiming EIB up to 11th September 2022 are provided in Table 1.

Table 1: Number of EIB Claims and EIB Recipients

Claims Individual Recipients
702,128 513,448

EIB is payable for up to 10 weeks where a person is diagnosed with Covid-19.  In a case where a person continues to be ill beyond 10 weeks, standard Illness Benefit may be paid for an extended period, based on the person’s continued eligibility.  Details on the duration of EIB claims are set out in Table 2.  The data in Table 2 refers to the claim duration, based on the certification dates.

Table 2: EIB claim durations

Weeks Claims
0-2 587,326
2-4 81,638
4-6 16,151
6-8 6,307
8-10 3,289
10+ 7,417


Of the 7,417 claims with a total certification period of 10 or more weeks, these relate to 5,637 individuals of whom 4,056 transferred to Illness Benefit payments, and were certified for 2 or more weeks. 98 persons who had at least one EIB claim of more than 10 weeks duration are now in receipt of Disability Allowance. A total of 73 people had a Disability Allowance claim rejected, while 27 people had Disability Allowance claims pending as of end-August 2022.