Diabetes WA receives a lot of questions from people living with all types of diabetes about their risk of contracting COVID-19. Although information is changing all the time, there is currently no evidence to date that people with diabetes are at an increased risk of being infected with COVID-19.
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However, people with diabetes or other chronic conditions do need to take extra precautions to protect themselves.
The risk of someone with diabetes getting unwell depends on the individual. Some people living with diabetes who contract COVID-19 may not be at risk of becoming more unwell. Those with elevated blood glucose levels, other health conditions, or a weakened immune system may be at risk of becoming more unwell and experiencing more severe symptoms.
This is for two reasons – if people living with diabetes do get COVID-19 then they may take longer to recover. The virus may also be harder to treat because illnesses can cause an increase in blood glucose levels.
For young people and children with type 1, data from Wuhan (China) and Italy shows no evidence that those with type 1 diabetes who develop COVID-19 go on to experience severe symptoms of the disease.
Keep up to date with the current information on our COVID-19 webpage.
Meanwhile, here are some tips to help reduce your exposure to the virus or chances of contracting the virus:
- Practice social distancing from others and consider self-isolation.
- Wash your hands thoroughly and regularly, especially before eating and after being in a public area.
- Avoid touching your face before you have washed and dried your hands.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
- Don’t share food, glasses, towels, tools etc.
- Cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze (use a tissue or your elbow).
- Dispose of tissues after use.
- Avoid contact with others showing symptoms of respiratory illness (sneezing or coughing).
- Stay at home if you are unwell with flu-like symptoms and follow your sick day management plan.
- Seek medical care early if you have a fever, cough and difficulty breathing. Contact your doctor by phone initially to see what options you may have (many clinics have increased their use of telemedicine) as visiting a clinic can increase your risk of being exposed to the virus.
Got Diabetes Questions?
Call our helpline – 1300 001 880
If you are living with diabetes and have any questions or concerns about your health, you can speak to a credentialled diabetes educator via the Diabetes WA Helpline on 1300 001 880, get in touch via email at email@example.com or you can book a free individual telehealth consultation by calling 1300 001 880.