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July 12, 2020

‘People with comorbidity are at high risk of severe COVID-19’

Islamabad

July 12, 2020

Islamabad : "People with comorbidity are at high risk of severe status of COVID-19. Elderly people particularly with heart disease, lung disease, diabetes, obesity, liver disease and any other ailment going on must be very careful. The current pandemic is an emerging infectious disease."

This was stated by the famous Physician Prof. Dr. Wasim Jafri while speaking at the COMSTECH webinar titled, “COVID-19 Pandemic and Related Health Issues." The webinar was attended by more than 78 health professionals from the OIC member states. Coordinator General COMSTECH Prof. Dr. M. Iqbal Choudhary also spoke on the occasion.

Prof. Wasim Jafri pointed out that diabetes could not be ignored at all as diabetes made everything worse including this fatal disease. The proportion of severe disease increases with age and so is the case of the death but must not neglect the younger population, he said, warning that even youth can get into a critical stage but current data shows that the old age population was more prone to get into the critical stage and ICU.

The mortality rate of COVID-19 almost approaches one to three percent but it can be faster in the presence of other comorbidity, he said, adding that it spreads from person-to-person via respiratory droplets among close contacts. He said, "Being within around six feet of a patient for a prolonged period of time." With the air-conditioning and fans it can travel longer distances and be aware of this while caring for a COVID patient, he said, adding that healthcare professionals were at enormous risk of infection if they were not wearing all recommended PPE.

Talking about the availability of drugs, he mentioned that Remdesivir is the only drug so far FDA approved, it is not a miracle drug, it does not reduce much of mortality, but reduces hospital stake from patients from 15 to 11 days. He mentioned that patients with liver cancer deteriorate more rapidly than those without cancer, adding that long-term liver transplant patients have more severe COVID-19 status then the short-term liver transplant patients. He pointed out that liver patients can suffer severe COVID-19, while kidney patients can have serious complications from COVID-19. "Fear, worry and stress are normal responses of perceived or real threats, he said, and observed that COVID-19 has changed our daily lives. It is important to care for our mental health along with our physical health. We need to follow guidelines of WHO on mental health and draw our own guidelines to practice in hospitals that help us to achieve good mental health, " he said.