With the COVID-19 pandemic, everyone is being asked by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and by state health departments to watch for symptoms of the coronavirus, which include fever, cough, and shortness of breath. While most people infected with the virus will heal without any special medical care, certain people are more vulnerable to infection.
If you’re an older adult or if you have a serious underlying medical condition, such as cancer, diabetes, or chronic lung disease, you’re advised by the CDC to take extra precautions to prevent infection. You may be more at risk for severe illness if:
- You’re 65 and older
- You live in a nursing home or long-term care facility
- You are any age and have an underlying medical condition (e.g. heart disease, severe asthma, diabetes, chronic kidney disease, cancer, liver disease)
- You’re severely obese (BMI of 40 or higher)
- You smoke
- You’ve had a bone marrow transplant
- You’re on immune weakening medications
- You’re undergoing dialysis
- You have poorly controlled HIV or AIDS
What if I am Sick?
Are you sick with COVID-19 or do you think you may have the virus? If so, it’s important that you stay home except when you get medical care. Avoid public places, including grocery stores and curbside takeout. The only reason you should be leaving your home is to visit the doctor. In addition to the above, follow these safety tips:
- Stay in touch with your healthcare provider
- Call your doctor before you get medical care
- If you have trouble breathing or bluish lips, be sure to get medical care
- Avoid all forms of public transportation including taxis, Uber, Lyft, and public busses
- Stay away from other people as much as possible
- If you live with other people, use a separate bathroom if available
To learn more about what to do if you have the coronavirus or are exhibiting symptoms, visit the CDC’s website.