Professor of Public Health and Aging, Denise Eldermire Shearer, is appealing to relatives of elderly people to consistently monitor them during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Jamaica recorded its first COVID-19 death yesterday, a 79-year-old man who was suffering from hypertension and diabetes. 

Elderly people, especially those with underlying medical conditions are said to be most at risk of dying from the novel coronavirus. 

Professor Eldermire Shearer today called for health centers to have exclusive service time for elderly people. 

Based on statistics received from China, where the virus originated, 18% of persons over 80 years old who contracted the virus, died and, for those between 70 and 79 years old, nearly 10% of them died. 

Professor Eldermire Shearer says like with other illnesses, COVID-19 presents differently in elderly people than it does in younger people. 

She says the National Health Fund is already making arrangements to have elderly people collect their medication two months in advance, to promote healthy social distancing in pharmacies and, she says elderly persons who are ill must be wary of what medications they use, should they become infected. 

She’s making this plea, to relatives of elderly people.