Coronavirus cases are on the rise in the US and it’s expected to get worse before it gets better. While some people will be able to fight off the COVID-19 virus at home and get back to normal, patients with auto-immune vulnerabilities and chronic diseases are at a much higher risk. These high-risk patients will suffer from more severe symptoms and are at a higher risk of death. Luckily, there are measures you can take to protect yourself and others with significant risk for fatal COVID-19 symptoms.
Who is Considered High Risk?
High risk people include elderly people and anyone who has a chronic medical condition. Chronic medical conditions include things like asthma, diabetes, heart disease, lung disease, and more. Immunosuppressed patients are also considered high risk.
Chronic diseases can weaken a patient’s immune system to the point where infectious diseases that can be fought off with rest are likely to cause serious symptoms. Chronic disease patients that even get the flu can have troubling symptoms. The most recent updates indicate that COVID-19 can cause fatal asphyxiation and breathing difficulty for older and vulnerable patients.
Basic COVID-19 Prevention
The same basic prevention tips that healthy people use to prevent COVID-19 are applicable for chronic disease patients. Basic prevention includes washing your hands frequently, avoid touching your face, and practice social distancing by avoiding crowded places. Follow the main prevention guidelines from the CDC to remain consistent with COVID-19 prevention.
Try to keep at least six feet between you and other people in public. Cover your mouth if you cough or sneeze and encourage others to do the same. Avoid high-touch surfaces as much as possible too – this includes things like door knobs, elevator buttons, and staircase railings.
Staying Home and Getting Rest
Experts are urging high-risk patients to stay home as much as they can during this time. If your community has had an outbreak, it’s especially important to stay home. Utilize modern delivery services and speak with your employer about working from home. High-risk children are advised to stay home too.
Stocking Up on Essential Supplies
Before you begin staying home, you’ll need to prepare for the possibility of a large outbreak that makes it too difficult for you to leave, even for basic essentials. Buy extra food, medications, and cleaning supplies to help you last through an outbreak. Remember to stock up reasonably, but not so much that items will expire before you’re able to use them.
Have a Plan and Speak with a Medical Expert/Provider
Speak with your primary care provider to discuss what you’ll do if you develop coronavirus symptoms. It’s often safer to stay home until symptoms get too severe to avoid spreading the virus to healthcare workers and other patients. For example, AFC Urgent Care Castle Rock has several resources, hotlines, and FAQs to protect against COVID-19.
Your healthcare provider will encourage all of the prevention methods mentioned above to help lower your risk of getting coronavirus.
Having a chronic medical condition during a time like this is scary, but panicking won’t help. Work to prepare and stay home as much as possible and you’ll be just fine!