COVID-19! Say what?
23. March 2020
We [Type one diabetes patients] hear it all the time. “Your immune system is not as strong as in a healthy person”, ”You are more vulnerable to pick up infections”, “you’re more likely to catch this”, “you have an increased risk to get that” …
After so many years living with the disease, I know that now, thank you very much. I don’t easily panic anymore, or let those ‘higher-risk’ messages get to me. Don’t get me wrong, I do take it seriously, but it is what it is, and we try to live accordingly.
Then along came a virus called [COVID-19] …
I must admit, at first, I was relatively calm. And in some naive way, I was even convinced this virus couldn’t catch me. But the more serious the situation became and got spread all over Europe, the more nervous I got, realizing that COVID-19 is an enormous public health threat and people with serious chronic medical conditions, including type one diabetes, are at a higher risk of experiencing complications and getting very sick from it. I started reading more about what this virus means for T1D’s and diligently followed all of the standard precautions that have been widely reported.
People living with type one diabetes are NOT more likely to catch the COVID-19 than the general population. However, it is once again a wake-up call that indeed, if you have T1D and you become infected with coronavirus, you are at increased risk of severe illness, complications and even a fatal outcome. Depending on how well your diabetes is managed. Is it ever different?
As a patient in the first place and as INNODIA employee, I am more convinced than ever that the work INNODIA performs is extremely important, valuable and priceless for so many people worldwide. We need to keep faith in the study, because it will happen! I can feel it. We are getting closer each and every day. Closer to better & more personalized treatment, prevention and one day, I’m sure, a cure.
Veerle Vanhuyse | T1D since 1987
Communication Representative INNODIA
Member of the patient advisory committee