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CDC to older Americans: Stock up on supplies, stay home amid Wuhan coronavirus

Christian Fernsby |
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or CDC has recommended that older people and others at higher risk of getting sick from Wuhan coronavirus stock up on supplies including food and medicines and stay home.

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The health regulator said the warning is based on a new study on Chinese patients with virus that indicated that older adults and people who have serious chronic medical conditions like heart disease, diabetes and lung disease are at higher risk of getting very sick from this illness.

As per the study, risk of serious illness increased for patients 60 and older, while it was the highest for people 80 and older.

Nancy Messonnier, director of the CDC's national center said in a conference call, "Make sure you have supplies on hand, like routine medications for blood pressure and diabetes and over the counter medicines... Have enough household items and groceries so that you will be prepared to stay home for a period of time."

The higher risk people are urged to contact their healthcare provider to ask about obtaining extra necessary medications to have on hand in case there is an outbreak of Wuhan coronavirus in the community.

Those who cannot get extra medications can consider using mail-order for medications. They are also asked to consider ways of getting food brought to house through family, social, or commercial networks.

People are also urged to take everyday precautions to keep space between oneself and others, wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, and to use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol.

CDC further urged communities to support older adults and people with disabilities to ensure their needs are taken into consideration. The recommendations include family and caregiver support, monitoring food and other medical supplies and to stock up on non-perishable food items.

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