Why it’s crucial to shield the elderly from coronavirus infection in Africa
The centralised distribution of social grants in SA exacerbates the threats to the elderly in rural areas
A common global Covid-19 risk factor, independent of region, is that faced by the elderly. Older people are at a higher risk of contracting severe forms of the disease not only because age itself is a factor, but also because they are more likely to have other underlying conditions that increase the probability of death.
A Covid study in China from 1,590 laboratory-confirmed hospitalised patients from 575 hospitals found that 25.1% of the sample presented at least one comorbidity, of which the most prevalent was hypertension (16.9%), followed by diabetes (8.2%), both more common among older patients. The study concluded that among the confirmed cases of Covid, patients with any comorbidity yielded poorer clinical outcomes than those without...