Page update at 9:52 September 10th 2020

Information for high-risk individuals

Those who are at increased risk of severe illness from coronavirus (COVID-19) should be especially careful about protecting themselves by staying at home and avoiding close contact with people who may be sick. For more information about who is at risk, see the CDC’s latest guidance here.

High-risk individuals

Based on what we know about COVID-19 right now, the following groups should be especially careful and socially distance from others:

  • People aged 65 or older
  • People in nursing homes or long-term care facilities
  • People with high-risk conditions, such as
  • Chronic lung disease, including moderate to severe asthma
  • Serious heart conditions
  • Compromised immune systems, like those caused by cancer treatment, organ transplants, smoking, poorly controlled HIV, or prolonged use of steroid medications
  • Poorly controlled diabetes, kidney, or liver disease
  • Severe obesity (BMI of 40 or greater)
  • Pregnant women are at higher risk for severe viral illness, but COVID-19 has not shown any increased risk at this time.

Where to get information for specific circumstances

  • Centers for Disease control and prevention


    Read everything you need to know about how to reduce your risk and be prepared during the COVID-19 outbreak if you have asthma.

    Find out more about COVID-19 and Asthma

  • National Cancer Institute


    If you are currently living with cancer or are worried for a friend or family member who has cancer, you can access specific information about coronavirus and cancer here, including advice on protecting yourself, recommended treatment, and other tips.

    Find out more about COVID-19 and Cancer

  • American Diabetes Association


    Discover useful information on coronavirus if you are living with diabetes, including why you may be more likely to experience serious complications if you do get sick with COVID-19.

    Find out more about COVID-19 and Diabetes

  • The American heart Association

    Heart disease

    If you are living with heart disease, you can access detailed information on who may be at higher risk and what you need to know.

    Find out more about COVID-19 and Heart Disease

  • National Kidney Foundation

    Kidney disease

    Read the latest information and advice for patients living with kidney disease, including how to protect yourself and prepare for the weeks ahead.

    Find out more about COVID-19 and Kidney disease

  • Centers for Disease control and prevention

    Mental health

    Whether you are living with a pre-existing mental health condition or want advice on how to manage your mental health during the coronavirus outbreak, here are helpful tips and advice for managing stress.

    Find out more about COVID-19 and Mental health

  • Centers for Disease control and prevention


    If you are currently pregnant or living with someone who is pregnant, you can find detailed information about pregnancy and coronavirus, including what we know about the risks and how to protect pregnant women, at the link below.

    Find out more about COVID-19 and Pregnancy