Interview with Co-Organizator of Next Week’s Unite To Fight Long Covid Conference

By David Tuller, DrPH

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Marco Wetzel, a digital sales expert, is one of five German Long Covid patients who banded together earlier this year with an ambitious plan to produce a major online conference called UniteToFight. Although they faced some initial skepticism, they quickly rounded up some high-profile names as speakers for the free event, including Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist Ed Yong, Mt Sinai neuroscientist and rehabilitation director David Putrino, and Yale immunologist Akiko Iwasaki.

The conference takes place next week on Wednesday, May 15th and Thursday, May 16th. Three dozen or more presentations are planned—some pre-taped, some live (including mine). So far, more than 7,000 people have registered to attend. After the event, the organizers plan to make the presentations available for later online viewing. To help with costs, the group has crowdfunded about €12,000, said Wetzel, and they plan to donate any left-over funds to biomedical research. Wetzel, 37, has suffered from Long Covid symptoms for almost four years. We spoke earlier today about why and how he and his colleagues decided to organize this event.