Why social distancing matters: 2 at-risk families share their fears

4 in 10 adults are at higher risk for serious illness if they get COVID-19

Kidney disease family photo
Kidney disease family photo

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The majority of people who become infected with COVID-19 don’t show symptoms or recover without special treatment, according to the World Health Organization.

Four in ten adults, however, have a higher risk of developing a serious illness, due to their age, or a pre-existing health condition.

That’s more than 100 million Americans, according to a new report by the Henry Kaiser Family Foundation.

To protect at-risk groups, government officials are asking people to practice social distancing and avoid large crowds to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

Dani Williams is currently on dialysis for kidney disease. She's waiting for her third transplant.

“It’s scary," explained Williams. "I’ve had quite a few friends reach out to me and offer to do shopping for me, which has been really helpful, but some things I do have to do on my own. So I’ve been doing it. I’ve just been doing it at off times, early in the morning, or later in the evening when it’s not so crowded.”

Her friend, Elise Loney, is also monitoring the virus closely. She donated her kidney to her son roughly 14 years ago after he went into total kidney failure.

“He lives in Miami. It’s a very densely populated area, a big tourist area and he’s been very nervous," Loney said. “He’s been extremely nervous actually."

Williams and Loney are urging people not to panic, but be aware and do their part to keep others safe and healthy.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends older people and those with a serious health condition keep social distance, avoid large crowds and stay home when it’s possible.

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