How to Keep Those at Higher Risk for COVID-19 Safe

How to Keep Those at Higher Risk for COVID-19 Safe

Gerald Lombardo
Posted by Gerald Lombardo
Updated on

When you visit friends and family who are at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19, there are some things you can do to help keep them safe, including:

  • Wearing a face covering

  • Staying 6 at feet apart

  • Meeting outside if possible

  • Washing your hands often

  • Sanitizing all touched surfaces

And remember, in cases where you can avoid visits with those at higher risk of COVID-19, you should do so.

Who Is in the Most Danger?

The short answer is 1) older adults and 2) those with underlying medical conditions.

Among adults, the risk for severe illness from COVID-19 increases with age, with older adults at the highest risk. Severe illness means that the person with COVID-19 may require hospitalization, intensive care, or a ventilator to help them breathe, or they may even die.

Risk for Severe Illness Increases with Age

As you get older, your risk for severe illness from COVID-19 increases. For example, people in their 50s are at higher risk for severe illness than people in their 40s. Similarly, people in their 60s or 70s are, in general, at higher risk for severe illness than people in their 50s. The greatest risk for severe illness from COVID-19 is among those aged 85 or older.

There are also other factors that can increase your risk for severe illness, such as having underlying medical conditions. By understanding the factors that put you at an increased risk, you can make decisions about what kind of precautions to take in your daily life.

As communities and businesses across the United States are opening, you may be thinking about resuming some activities, running errands, and attending events and gatherings. But understand that if you are in the “high risk” category, there is no way to ensure you have zero risk of infection, so it is important to understand the risks and know how to be as safe as possible.

People at increased risk of severe illness from COVID-19, and those who live with them, should consider their level of risk before deciding to go out and ensure they are taking steps to protect themselves. Consider avoiding activities where taking protective measures may be difficult, such as activities where social distancing can’t be maintained. Everyone should take steps to prevent getting and spreading COVID-19 to protect themselves, their communities, and people who are at increased risk of severe illness.

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