Diver Return After COVID-19 Infection (DRACO): A Longitudinal Assessment

Between August 2020 and July 2021, DAN recruited more than 1,000 divers who had recovered from suspected or confirmed COVID-19 infection for a long-term study on the effects of COVID-19 on divers’ health and fitness to dive.

August 2020 – August 2025


Since the declaration of the pandemic in early 2020, the pulmonary effects of COVID-19 have been the center of attention, causing great concern among the general public. Divers soon realized that those who contracted the disease might see their pulmonary fitness to dive affected. In their search for an answer, divers from all over the world have been contacting DAN to express their concern about returning to dive after COVID-19.

Current guidance for returning to dive is based on prior experience with viral pneumonias, which often manifest similarly. That guidance is based on full recovery, a rehabilitation period to achieve previous baseline exercise tolerance, and a formal evaluation by a physician with the assistance of diving medical experts if required.

This study aims to provide answers to divers, dive businesses, and medical professionals regarding COVID-19 and returning to diving. Participation in this study involves periodic online surveys about the diver’s COVID-19 infection, recovery, and experiences after returning to diving following recovery from the disease. There are no direct physical risks associated with participation in this study, and participants can withdraw at any time.

If you have any questions about this study, contact the research team at .