COVID-19 Update April 1, 2020

COVID-19 Update April 1, 2020

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Hello Friends, Jim here.

People seem to be having a little trouble understanding who is at higher risk and who isn’t. 

I guess it’s important to point out that we are ALL AT RISK of the coronavirus which is why keeping up precautions is vital. But the people who are at HIGHER RISK are people whose immune system is not strong enough to protect against infection. Those people include:

  • People aged 65 years and older
  • People who live in a nursing home or long-term care facility

People of all ages with underlying medical conditions, particularly if not well controlled, including:

  • People with chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma
  • People who have serious heart conditions
  • People who are immunocompromised
    • Many conditions can cause a person to be immunocompromised, including cancer treatment, smoking, bone marrow or organ transplantation, immune deficiencies, poorly controlled HIV or AIDS, and prolonged use of corticosteroids and other immune weakening medications
  • People with severe obesity (body mass index [BMI] of 40 or higher)
  • People with diabetes
  • People with chronic kidney disease undergoing dialysis
  • People with liver disease

You may not be one of these, but you love one of these, or may be a neighbor to one of these. 

So keep up Social Distancing, and wash your hands and surfaces often. When you shop, be aware of what you touch, and do not touch your face. Be safe out there.



Can vitamin D help strengthen your immune system?

Vitamin D and the Immune System (2012)

Aranow, C;J Investig Med. 2011 Aug; 59(6): 881–886.


“Vitamin D has important functions beyond those of calcium and bone homeostasis which include modulation of the innate and adaptive immune responses. Vitamin D deficiency is prevalent in autoimmune disease. Cells of the immune system are capable of synthesizing and responding to vitamin D. Immune cells in autoimmune diseases are responsive to the ameliorative effects of vitamin D suggesting that the beneficial effects of supplementing vitamin D deficient individuals with autoimmune disease may extend beyond effects on bone and calcium homeostasis.”


The news is finally addressing the immunocompromised

U.S.News and World Report


“If you have an autoimmune condition, Roberts suggests these steps:

  • Discuss your individual medication regimen with your rheumatologist. “Sometimes it could perhaps be trimmed a bit,” Roberts says.” Drug holidays of one or more medications may be recommended,” he says, “particularly if you have another condition that may weaken your immune system, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), diabetes or sickle cell disease.
  • If you’re describing possible COVID-19 symptoms to other health care providers who are less familiar with your medical history – like emergency room physicians – let them know that you are on medications that might be suppressing your immune system. “Sometimes that is overlooked and not brought into the equation in terms of how to treat patients, whether to hospitalize and what medications to give,” Roberts notes.
  • Follow COVID-19 prevention recommendations from the CDC, which address hand-washing, social distancing, sheltering at home, respiratory etiquette and self-isolation or self-quarantine when appropriate.”


The Washington Post

New CDC data shows danger of coronavirus for those with diabetes, heart or lung disease, other chronic conditions


“The report reinforces a critically important lesson: Although the disease is typically more severe among older people, people of any age with underlying medical conditions are at increased risk if they contract the virus, for which there is no vaccine or approved drug treatment.

The report shows covid-19 is thrusting vulnerable people in the United States into intensive care units and disproportionately taking the lives of people who already face medical challenges.”


The CDC have updated their guidelines

Updated Information from the CDC on “People Who Are At Higher Risk for Severe Illness”

The CDC also has up-to-date information on the risk to pregnant women and unsheltered homeless persons

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This information has been compiled by Jim Sliney Jr, RMA from University of California San FranciscoMedlinePlus.govDisability-Benefits-Help.orgNational Institutes of Health. This information is not medical advice.

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