COVID-19 is a new disease and there is limited information regarding risk factors for severe disease. Based on current information and clinical expertise, older adults and people of any age who have serious underlying medical conditions might be at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19.
Those at high-risk for severe illness from COVID-19 include:
- People aged 65 years and older.
- People who live in a nursing home or long-term care facility.
- Other high-risk conditions could include:
- People with chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma.
- People who have serious heart conditions.
- People who are immunocompromised including cancer treatment.
- People of any age with severe obesity (body mass index [BMI] >40) or certain underlying medical conditions, such as those with diabetes, renal failure, or liver disease might also be at risk.
- People who are pregnant should be monitored since they are known to be at risk with severe viral illness, however, to date data on COVID-19 has not shown increased risk.
Many conditions can cause a person to be immunocompromised, including cancer treatment, smoking, bone marrow or organ transplantation, immune deficiencies, HIV or AIDS, and prolonged use of corticosteroids and other immune weakening medications.
Precautions for Persons with Underlying Health Conditions
Anyone with a chronic medical condition or who is immunocompromised and is receiving home-health care should:
- Avoid close contact to anyone that is sick and do not allow anyone to enter your home that is showing symptoms of respiratory infection such as cough, fever, shortness of breath and sore throat.
- Do not allow persons who have traveled internationally or on a cruise ship in the past 14 days to enter your home, whether they have gotten tested or not.
On September 1, 2020, Florida issued Emergency Order 20-009 which lifts restrictions for visitation to nursing homes, assisted living facilities (ALFs), adult family-care homes, adult group homes and other long-term care facilities. Emergency Order 20-009 also requires all visitors to wear PPE pursuant to the most recent CDC guidelines, and those not making physical contact still must wear a mask.
See more information about people at higher risk for more serious complications from COVID-19.
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