CDC Expands List for People Most At-Risk for Severe COVID-19 Illness

Rebekah Sager
June 25, 2020 - 11:54 am
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    In a teleconference call with reporters, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) broadened the list for those at an increased risk of getting severely ill from COVID-19. 

    Highlighting the ongoing need for people to continue following guidelines of social distancing and using face covering when not able to stay at least six feet away from others, the CDC removed the specific age of "older adults" and is now cautioning that "among adults, risk increases steadily as you age, and it’s not just those over the age of 65 who are at increased risk for severe illness." 

    "Everyone should continue to do their part to implement prevention strategies, such as focusing on activities where social distancing can be maintained, washing your hands frequently, limiting contact with and disinfecting commonly touched surfaces or shared items, and wearing a cloth face covering when you are around people you do not live with, especially when it is difficult to stay 6 feet apart or when people are indoors," the CDC said. 

    The CDC additionally amended the list of underlying medical conditions that increase a person's risk of severe illness -- regardless of age -- adding that this update increases the number of people impacted. An estimated 40% of American adults are considered obese, according to the CDC.  

    Chronic kidney disease

    COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease)

    Obesity (BMI of 30 or higher)

    Immunocompromised state (weakened immune system) from solid organ transplant

    Serious heart conditions, such as heart failure, coronary artery disease, or cardiomyopathies

    Sickle cell disease

    Type 2 diabetes

    CDC Director Robert Redfield added that the number of Americans who have been infected with the coronavirus is likely 10 times higher than the number of cases reported, according to the head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

    "Our best estimate right now is that for every case that’s reported, there actually are 10 other infections.”

    Additionally, the CDC added asthma, high blood pressure, neurologic conditions such as dementia, cerebrovascular disease such as stroke, and pregnancy to the list. 

    The report released from Thursday, adds that pregnant women with COVID-19 were significantly more likely to be hospitalized, admitted to the intensive care unit, and receive mechanical ventilation than nonpregnant women, but were not at greater risk for death. 

    LA Mayor Garcetti announced more testing per day to meet the need of COVID-19 tests across the region.

    He said he directed his team to scale testing to meet the immediate heightened demands by adding 6,000 tests per day to a capacity of 13,000 tests a day starting tomorrow at seven city testing sites.

    Angelenos can find more info and sign up at http://Coronavirus.LACity.org/Testing

    The Trump administration is ending federal funding for over a dozen COVID-19 testing sites spread across five states.

    Wednesday, Politico reported that "the federal government is ending its support for 13 drive-thru coronavirus testing sites on June 30, urging states to take over their operations—even as cases spike in several parts of the country."