Sermo Surveys Reveals 87% of Global Physicians Feel There is a Lack of Clinical Guidelines on How to Treat Long Covid in Patients

Latest Barometer Survey of 1,110+ Physicians Finds Low Patient Interest in New Bivalent Covid Booster

New York, NY – A new survey from Sermo, a physician-first online community and leader in global HCP insights, found that the majority of physicians feel there is a lack of clinical guidelines to diagnose and treat Long Covid in patients in their practices. The survey of more than 1,100 global physicians found that 86% felt there is a lack of clinical guidance on how to diagnose Long Covid and 87% reported that they felt there is a lack of clinical guidance on how to treat Long Covid in patients. 

Long Covid is Top-of-mind for Physicians and Patients Alike:

Long Covid is a pressing issue for many physicians. 62% of surveyed physicians reported that they are seeing an increase in Long Covid symptoms in patients in their practice and 71% reported seeing an increase in patients being concerned about Long Covid. Physicians are also acutely aware of Long Covid’s potential effect on their patients for developing new health conditions as more than half (57%) of surveyed physicians are seeing patients in their practices newly diagnosed with another condition (autoimmune diseases, IBD, myocarditis, A-fib, etc.) following a Covid infection. Long Covid is also affecting patient mental health as 77% of surveyed physicians reported that they are seeing an increase in mental health issues with patients in their practices who are dealing with Long Covid.

U.S. Physicians Are Recommending the New Bivalent Covid Booster, But Patients Aren’t Interested:

Booster apathy is high among already vaccinated patients. While 87% of U.S.-based surveyed physicians are recommending that patients get the new bivalent Covid booster; more than half (54%) of physicians report that patients who are already vaccinated are resistant to getting it. When asked why vaccinated patients were resistant to getting the new bivalent Covid booster, surveyed physicians reported the most common reason they hear from patients is that they will be infected regardless of being boosted (58%), followed by they are “over it” with pandemic fatigue (57%), and they are fearful they will feel unwell from the booster (48%). Patients are also ready to take a chance on when they felt they need the new booster, as nearly a quarter (24%) of surveyed U.S.-based physicians reported that patients expressed wanting to wait to get boosted until there is an increase in local cases.

Unclear guidelines were among other reasons physicians were hearing from already vaccinated patients in their practices on why they aren’t getting the new bivalent Covid booster:

  • 33% of surveyed physicians reported that patients were unsure when to get boosted because they were recently infected 
  • 17% of surveyed physicians reported that patients were unsure about bivalent booster availability for their vaccine brand

“Long Covid is a secondary pandemic crisis challenging both physicians and patients alike,” says Claudia Martorell, MD MPH FACP, Sermo Medical Advisory Board member. “Long Covid’s complexities and lack of clinical guidelines on how to treat it is of increasing frustration to many physicians trying to help patients in their practices.”

In addition to facing booster resistance among already vaccinated patients, surveyed physicians reported that misinformation continues to persist among patients in their practices. Nearly half (48%) of U.S.-based surveyed physicians reported hearing misinformation from patients about the new bivalent Covid booster. When asked what misinformation they were hearing most often from patients about the bivalent Covid booster, surveyed physicians reported they most often heard you don’t need a booster if you’ve already had Covid (68%) followed by the vaccine was rushed into development and there is a lack of clinical data (58%).

This survey was fielded as part of Sermo’s ongoing Barometer survey. The survey included more than 1,100 global physicians who were surveyed between Sept 22 – 26, 2022. To explore more findings, visit

About Sermo: 

Sermo turns physician experience, expertise, and observations into actionable insights for the global healthcare community. Engaging with more than 1.3 million HCPs across 150 countries, the company provides physicians with a social platform and unique community that fosters impactful peer-to-peer collaboration & discussions about issues that are important to them and their patients. Sermo offers on-demand access to physicians via a suite of proprietary technology to provide business intelligence that benefits pharmaceutical, healthcare partners, and the medical community at large. To learn more, visit 

Media Contact:

Allyson Noonan

AN Communications