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Comment on COVID-19 from the British HIV Association (BHIVA)

Thursday 27 February 2020

BHIVA has received enquiries about the novel Coronavirus, COVID-19, in people with HIV.

There is no evidence so far to determine whether people with HIV are at greater risk of COVID-19 acquisition or severe disease. The main mortality risk factors to date are older age and co-morbidities, including renal disease and diabetes. Some groups with relatively lower immune suppression, such as the very young and pregnant women, do not appear to be at higher risk of complications, although the numbers analysed are very small. PHE advises that clinicians should be alert to the possibility of atypical presentations in patients who are immunocompromised.

BHIVA recommends:

  • Following the regularly updated advice from Public Health England, Health Protection Scotland, Public Heath Wales, the Department of Health Northern Ireland and the Health Service Executive Ireland.

  • Ensuring people with HIV have received influenza and pneumococcal vaccination in line with BHIVA vaccine guidelines.


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