Marketplace podcast features Pfaff on long COVID research

Data gleaned from electronic health records helps identify patterns in the little-understood ailment, which afflicts as many as 23 million Americans.

Emily Pfaff, PhD, MS

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that up to 23 million Americans have been affected by long COVID. That term describes a wide variety of conditions, from brain fog and chronic fatigue to neurological problems and blood clots, that persist for months or even years after infection.

But clear answers about exactly how often this happens, who's most at risk and why, are still elusive.

Marketplace's Meghan McCarty Carino speaks with Emily Pfaff, assistant professor of medicine at UNC-Chapel Hill and co-director of Informatics and Data Science at NC TraCS, who uses artificial intelligence to analyze electronic health records, looking for patterns that might better identify the syndrome and treat patients. Pfaff said some of the most common markers the algorithm detects are fatigue, shortness of breath and frequent doctor visits.

Listen to the podcast here:

Read the edited transcript and see more at

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