Much of the coronavirus discussion today remains rightly focused on flattening the curve to mitigate the demand on the healthcare system. As the medical community learns more about COVID-19 we’re finding that preexisting medical conditions are of even greater concern for many. According to a recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report, nearly 90% of adult patients hospitalized with COVID-19 in the United States who develop severe complications had one or more underlying health conditions such as type 2 diabetes or cardiovascular disease.
Given that it will be some time until we emerge from this global health crisis, it’s more important than ever that people take seriously chronic conditions that can be positively impacted by lifestyle changes such as making healthier food choices and exercising. Research shows that even a modest weight loss of 5 to 10% of total body weight will produce health benefits, such as improvements in blood pressure, cholesterol and sugars.
While this starts with personal responsibility, employers can have a significant impact through education and resources via their health benefit programs. We’re proud of the role Vitality plays in working with employers to encourage and help our members make it easier to live their healthiest lives.