CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – Long covid is a chronic illness that carries a host of potentially debilitating symptoms, that can last for months or years, and worries are growing about the effect it may be having on the economy.

Experts say the illness is disabling thousands, perhaps millions, of workers to such an extent, that they are forced to throttle back hours or leave the workforce altogether. According to CNBC, there is an estimated range from 500,000 to 3 million, in terms of how many people have left the labor force due to Covid.

A worker shortage worsened by long Covid is also fueling fast-rising prices for household goods and services.