Senior Centers and Nursing Homes Respond to Coronavirus
Metro Detroit senior centers and nursing homes are limiting access to facilities to protect older adults from exposure to coronavirus. Too many guests and visitors add up to too many opportunities for the virus to hitch a ride and replicate the tragic situation that happened in Washington State when more than 20 residents of a nursing home succumbed to the virus. Those residents were susceptible because immune function declines with age. That makes older adults more susceptible and at higher risk for serious illness if infected with the coronavirus, says Sean Leng, MD, a Johns Hopkins University geriatrician in an article on Vox.com, “Why COVID-19 is so dangerous for older adults.”
“Immune function is not as robust as it is in younger people,” Leng says.“The immune functions go down rather quickly after age 75 or 80.”
A compromised immune system coupled with underlying chronic health conditions – which many older adults are likely to have -- makes it harder to cope with and recover from illness. Leng says age increases the risk that the respiratory system or lungs will shut down when an older person has COVID-19 disease.
“In other words, it’s not just a sluggish response to infections that can harm older adults; the immune system’s overreaction to an invader can also kill.”
For more information, see: www. vox.com/2020/3/12/21173783/ coronavirus-death-age-covid-19- elderly-seniors
Beware of Virus Scammers
The National Council on Aging warns older adults that the Federal Trade Commission has identified several scammers offering tips to protect you from the coronavirus. The NCOA advises ignoring emails claiming to be from the CDC saying they have information about the virus and ignoring online offers for vaccinations. There currently are no vaccines, pills, potions, lotions, lozenges, or other prescription or over-the-counter products available to treat or cure COVID-19 online or in stores. For additional information from the FTC, see: www.consumer.ftc. gov/features/coronavirus-scams- what-ftc-doing.