Your Covid-19 questions answered

The pandemic of disease caused by the coronavirus is accelerating and New Zealanders are preparing for self-isolation. At this time it is more important than ever to look after your heart health, especially if you are already living with heart disease.

As New Zealand prepares for the shut-down of all but essential services nationwide and people are asked to stay home, it is more important than ever to look after your heart health, especially if you are already living with a heart condition. 

COVID-19 is a new type of coronavirus and we are learning more about who is at most risk every day. At this time, we know that people with chronic heart disease, heart failure and high blood pressure are at much higher risk of severe symptoms and the worst outcomes.

Having a heart condition does not mean you are more likely to catch coronavirus, but you are at higher risk of complications if you do catch it.

Advice for people living with heart disease during the Alert Level 4 isolation period:

  • Follow government guidance on social distancing and good hygiene. 
  • Reduce contact with people as much as possible. Try to find someone who can help with your shopping and essential items but avoid physical contact with them. 
  • Phone your doctor about getting a flu shot. People with heart disease are considered a priority for flu immunisation. Follow advice from your doctor or health provider about contacting them by phone rather than in person. 
  • If you are taking medication, you should make sure you have enough at home. 
  • We recommend that you find someone who can collect your medication for you and avoid contact with them when you receive it.

It is important to keep up heart health practices:

  • You should continue to eat heart healthy foods
  • Find ways to remain active
  • Look after your mental wellbeing
  • If you do have symptoms of a heart attack call 111 for help immediately.

Useful links

Advice for vulnerable people during this time

The Government's Covid-19 website

Ministry of Health advice on self-isolation

Getting a flu vaccinationTaking heart medications