What You Need to Know about COVID-19 – March 15, 2020
What You Need toKnow about COVID–19
If I have HIV, how concerned should I be? The impact of COVID-19 on people living with HIV/AIDS is not known. However, if you are older and have another condition like heart disease or a lung disease, you would have the same risk as someone with those conditions who does not have HIV. The most important thing you can do is to make sure you are taking your HIV medications and that your viral load is under control. Get plenty of sleep, eat well and avoid drugs and alcohol. Keep your immune system as healthy as possible.
I don’t have any medical problems and I am 30 years old. This doesn’t affect me, right? Given what we know now, you are much less likely to have a severe case of COVOD-19. But before you decide brush this off, remember that you can unwittingly pass the virus on to someone that might get very sick from it – your parents, grandparents or a friend with diabetes, heart disease or a lung condition. We all need to take this seriously.
Should I get tested for COVID-19? If you have symptoms of COVID-19 – fever and symptoms of lower respiratory illness (e.g. cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing) – call your doctor and ask what you should do.
Is there anything I can do to help stop this virus from spreading? Yes! The virus spreads when people breathe out droplets that contain the virus, and someone inhales those droplets. Or when someone exhales the droplets and they land on a surface that is touched by another person. Then the person who touched the surface puts their finger in their mouth, eye, or nose. To stop the spread, practice what we are now calling “social distancing.” This means that when you visit someone, you stay about 6 feet away from them. You won’t inhale their droplets and at 6 feet, even if they sneeze, the droplets likely won’t get to you.
And finally, wash your hands. Again, and again, and again. If you have touched something that has droplets with the virus, washing your hands will get rid of it. Refrain from touching your eyes, nose or mouth. And wash your hands.
Thank you for reading. Stay healthy,
Dr. Tasnim Khan, Chief Medical Officer, One Community Health
We answered these questions based on available medical information as of March 14, 2020. There is much that we don’t know about this virus. If you have more questions, send them to email@example.com and we will answer them for you.