Safety and Prevention
People of any age can become sick with COVID-19, but some are at higher risk of severe illness, including people who...
- are 65 years of age or older
- live in a nursing home or long-term care facility
- are pregnant or were recently pregnant
- live with a high-risk medical condition, including
- chronic kidney disease, heart disease, liver disease, or lung disease, including COPD and asthma
- dementia or other neurological conditions
- diabetes (Type 1 or Type 2)
- down syndrome
- high blood pressure
- HIV infection
- immunocompromised state (weakened immune system)
- mental health conditions and substance use disorders
- overweight (body mass index [BMI] of 25 or higher but less than 30) and obesity (BMI of 30 or higher)
- sickle cell disease or thalassemia
- solid organ or blood stem cell transplant
- stroke or cerebrovascular disease
Learn more about factors that can affect your risk of getting very sick from COVID-19.
|Factors That Impact Your Risk of Exposure|
|Scenario||Least Risk||Moderate Risk||Most Risk|
|Length of time: How long are you near people?||Shorter amount of time (e.g., grocery shopping)||Moderate amount of time (e.g., working out at the gym)||Longer amount of time (e.g., spending a full day)|
|Cough or heavy breathing: Are people near you coughing, singing, shouting, or breathing heavily?||Less exhalation (e.g., not talking)||Moderate exhalation (e.g., having a conversation)||Elevated exhalation (e.g., singing together)|
|Symptoms: Do the people near you show any symptoms?||No symptoms||Symptoms|
|Masks: Are you or the people near you wearing a respirator (for example, N95) or high-quality mask?||You and the people near you are wearing masks||Only some people are wearing masks||No one is wearing a mask|
Ventilation and filtration: How well-ventilated is the area where you are near people?
|Outdoors||Well-ventilated indoors (e.g., fans are running, windows are open, air purifiers are in use)||Poorly ventilated indoors (fans and air purifiers are off, windows are closed)|
|Distance: How close are you to other people?||Distant (e.g., six feet apart)||Moderately close||Very close or touching|
Understand your risk of exposure and make choices that protect yourself and your family.