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Why It's Important to Focus On Chronic Illness Now More Than Ever

Posted by Claire Hart on 4/27/20 2:47 PM
Claire Hart

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Did you know that people with cardiovascular disease face more life-threatening complications and a substantially higher risk of death from coronavirus? According to data and reports from doctors in several different countries, even those with high blood pressure are being urged to take extra precautions against infection.

Although Covid-19 is a respiratory disease, doctors increasingly report that patients can develop cardiovascular complications, such as heart-rhythm disorders, blood clots and inflammation causing chest pain that mimics a heart attack. While these complications can occur in Covid-19 patients who are otherwise healthy, people with existing heart disease are especially at risk because their cardiovascular systems are already impaired.
 
 
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According to data from the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the mortality rate of Covid-19 patients who have cardiovascular disease is more than four times higher than the rate for patients overall with the illness. It is nearly three times higher for Covid-19 patients with high blood pressure alone. Additionally, a study by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that nearly half of U.S. hospitalized Covid-19 patients had hypertension and 27.8% had cardiovascular disease.

 

We may not be able to control the spread of Covid-19, but we can control our vulnerability to it, by reducing the number of people with chronic illness.

Cardiovascular disease is the most common and deadliest so far of several chronic illnesses that make some people more vulnerable to the dangerous effects of Covid-19. However, while this pandemic brings to light the severity of chronic illness, it also reveals the importance of prevention. Now, more than ever, it is critical that companies ensure their employees are healthy and that chronic illnesses are being properly managed. Good health means a strong immune system, giving employees a much better chance of fighting off viruses, including Covid-19.

 

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By focusing on modifiable risk factors for chronic illness such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure, inactivity, etc., employers can reduce their employees’ chances of developing chronic disease while simultaneously helping them withstand viruses such as the flu and Covid-19.

Throughout the past 15 years, TargetCare's focus has remained on helping companies address chronic illness and Covid-19 has only intensified that initiative.

Prevention is key and empowering employees to understand where they are with respect to their health and knowing how to manage their conditions is essential to keeping your population healthy and productive. We have always been a trusted resource during hard times for our partners, and Covid-19 is no different. The TargetCare team continues to offer accountability and support, both to employees and employers.

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The truth is that if the number of people suffering from cardiovascular disease and other chronic illness wasn’t already so high, American society would be seeing fewer cases, hospitalizations and even deaths due to coronavirus. Now, more than ever, it is critical to focus on the prevention of chronic illness in order to protect the future health of our employees and our businesses.

Topics: employee wellness

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