Information COVID-19 Risks and Information for Older Adults
Increased Risk of Severe Illness from COVID-19 Older adults (especially those aged 50 years and older) are more likely than younger people to get very sick from COVID-19. The risk increases with age. This means they are more likely to need hospitalization, intensive care, or a ventilator to help them breathe, or they could die. Most COVID-19 deaths occur in people older than 65. Other factors can also make you more likely to get very sick from COVID-19. These include not getting vaccinated, or having underlying medical conditions— like chronic lung disease, heart disease, or a weakened immune system. Often, the more health conditions you have, the higher your risk of becoming very sick if you get COVID-19. Source: National Institue on Aging
Older unvaccinated adults are more likely to be hospitalized or die from COVID-19
• There are tools to protect you from getting very sick from COVID-19: o Stay up to date on your COVID-19 vaccines. Vaccines are effective at protecting people from severe illness and death from COVID-19. o Older adults, especially those with other medical conditions, wear the most protective mask that fits well and that you will wear consistently to protect against COVID-19. o Get treatment early if you have COVID-19. Effective treatments are now widely available for people who are more likely to get very sick from COVID-19, including older adults. • Wear a high-quality mask or respirator (N95). • Get treatment early if you have COVID-19. Treatment must be started within a few days after you first develop symptoms to be effective. • Avoid contact with people who have suspected or confirmed COVID-19, even if they don’t feel sick. Other things you can do you to protect yourself and others • Improve ventilation in indoor air (like moving air into, out of, or within a room).
Risk for Severe Illness with COVID-19 Increases with Age What You Need to Know • Older adults, especially those with other medical conditions, should wear the most protective mask that fits well and that they will wear consistently to protect against COVID-19.
Protect Yourself and Others from Getting COVID-19 Stay up to date with your COVID-19 vaccines, including recommended boosters • COVID-19 vaccines are the best way
to protect from severe COVID-19 illness, hospitalization, and death. • These vaccines are safe, effective, and free. If you are aged 50 years or older, you should take other prevention actions as well , especially if you have a medical condition that makes you more likely to get very sick from COVID-19 OR if you live in a place with high COVID-19 community levels.
• Get tested if needed. • Follow recommendations for what to do if you have been exposed. • Stay home if you have suspected or confirmed COVID-19. • Increase space and distance from others. If you are at high risk of getting very sick, talk with a healthcare provider about
additional prevention actions. Source: National Institue on Aging
November/December 2023, Never Too Late | Page 23
Pima Council on Aging
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