Health Advice for People at Higher Risk

Last modified: 
Fri, 05/08/2020 - 16:10

COVID-19 can make anyone seriously sick. However, there are some people who are at a higher risk and need to take extra steps to avoid getting COVID-19.

People at increased risk

You may be at increased risk from COVID-19 if you:

  • Are over the age of 60
  • Have or have had heart disease
  • Have or have had lung disease like COPD or asthma
  • Smoke or vape
  • Have diabetes or another chronic disease
  • Have an immune system disorder, or a weakened immune system like cancer.

How to protect yourself from COVID-19

People at higher risk for getting seriously sick from COVID-19 need to take extra steps to avoid it.

It is recommended that you follow this advice until further notice.

DO

  • Shop for basic needs such as food and medicine once a week – or have a friend or family do the shopping and leave at your doorstep
  • Stay at least 2 metres (3 steps) away from household members as much as possible.
  • Go to work, but only if you cannot work from home
  • Prepare a hospital bag, including a list of the medicines you are taking in case you need to go to a hospital
  • Wash you hands with soap and water often – for at least 20 seconds
  • Use alcohol-based sanitizer if soap and water are not available
  • Wash your hands as soon as you get home
  • Cover your mouth in your elbow if you cough or sneeze
  • Throw tissue in the garbage and wash your hands
  • Wear a cloth face mask while in public
  • Clean objects and surfaces you touch often (like door handles, kettles, phones, and tablets) using your regular cleaning products
  • Clean a shared bathroom each time you use it, for example by wiping the surfaces you have touched

DO NOT

  • Touch your eyes, nose or mouth
  • Have visitors in your home, including friends and family, unless they are providing essential care
  • Stop taking any prescription medicines without speaking to your doctor

Look after yourself

To stay well while you are at home:

  • Stay in touch with family and friends over the phone or social media
  • Keep yourself busy – try new activities like cooking, online learning
  • Exercise at home
  • If it is warm, spend time with the windows open to let in fresh air
  • Spend time outside, but within your property and stay at least 2 metres (3 steps) away from other people

Advice on mental health while staying at home:

People with certain health conditions

Some associations provide specific advice about COVID-19

Frequently Asked Questions