New data from Statistics Canada compiled in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic shows a large share of Canadians with medical pre-conditions placing them at higher risk of developing complications from COVID-19. (Black Press Media files)

Older Canadians with pre-existing health pre-conditions more at risk of developing complications from COVID-19

According to Statistics Canada, 38 per cent of the Canadian population was aged 50 and older in 2019

New data from Statistics Canada compiled in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic shows a large share of Canadians with medical pre-conditions who are at higher risk of developing complications from COVID-19.

The report from Statistics Canada assessing health and social challenges associated with the COVID-19 situation in Canada finds 33 per cent of Canadians aged 50 and older reported having high blood pressure, 14 per cent reported having diabetes, and five per cent reported having chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) has identified individuals with certain pre-existing health conditions and weaker immune systems as being more at risk of developing complications from COVID-19. According to PHAC’s daily epidemiological reports, the most commonly reported pre-existing health conditions among cases included cardiac disease, diabetes, and respiratory disease.

The new data from Statistics Canada also underscores the importance of age, as PHAC has identified older people as more likely to be at risk for developing complications from COVID-19. They are also more likely to report the pre-existing health conditions listed above.

RELATED: Canadian seniors isolated with fewer friends, less access to internet

According to Statistics Canada, 38 per cent of the Canadian population was aged 50 and older in 2019 with this share varying by province and territory. According to Statistics Canada’s annual demographic estimates, the province with the oldest population was Newfoundland and Labrador, where 46 per cent of people were aged 50 and older. That figure was over 40 per cent in all three Maritime provinces (Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick) and in Quebec, the COVID-19 hotspot in Canada with 8,580 cases, just over 50 per cent of all confirmed cases in Canada as of April 7.

PHAC’s daily epidemiological report for April 6 based on 56 per cent of reported cases shows 35 per cent of cases were aged 40 to 59 years, followed by those aged 20 to 39 (28 per cent) and 60-79 years of age (24 per cent).

Hospitalization data for 4,616 cases with completed case report forms show 702 have been hospitalized, including 204 in intensive care units (ICUs).

While 32 per cent of these hospitalized cases are 60 years of age and older, this age group represents the highest proportion of hospitalizations (61 per cent) and ICU admissions (60 per cent).

Individuals under the age of 19 account for nine hospitalizations and one admission to ICU.

As of April 7, the PHAC recorded 345 deaths.

Like us on Facebook and follow @wolfgang_depner


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

New Democratic leader John Horgan during Monday's campaign stop in Sidney. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)
NDP John Horgan wins Langford-Juan de Fuca

BC Green candidate Gord Baird takes second place early in the polls

(BC Hydro outage map)
UPDATE: Power restored to more than 3,000 Sooke residents

Two polling stations impacted by outage

The mottled sky, the lights coming on at water’s edge and in Victoria West, and the reflections on the building windows make for a scenic sunset photo in Victoria’s Selkirk neighbourhood. (Don Descoteau/News Staff)
Sunset on the Selkirk in Victoria

Send your photos to for a chance to see them in the paper

Christopher Mauro, right, assistant manager of the Sidney Save-On-Foods, and Nick Luney, youth initiatives director for the Victoria Pride Society, celebrate the success of a pandemic fundraiser for the local Pride Society. (Courtesy Save-On Foods)
Grocery managers across the Island pull together for Queer youth

With Victoria Pride Parade and Festival cancelled, Save-On-Foods staff found a way to raise funds

Shay Baker, 17, hasn’t been seen or heard from since Oct. 21 and is wanted on outstanding warrants. (Victoria Police Department)
Victoria police searching for high-risk missing youth

Shay Baker, 17, is wanted on outstanding warrants

B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry gives a daily briefing on COVID-19 cases at an almost empty B.C. Legislature press theatre in Victoria, B.C., on March 25, 2020. (Don Craig/B.C. government)
B.C. sees 223 new COVID-19 cases, now 2,009 active

Two new care home outbreaks in Surrey, Burnaby

Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam responds to a question during a news conference Friday October 23, 2020 in Ottawa. Canada’s top physician says she fears the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths may increase in the coming weeks as the second wave continues to drive the death toll toward 10,000. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s top doctor warns severe illness likely to rise, trailing spike in COVID-19 cases

Average daily deaths from virus reached 23 over the past seven days, up from six deaths six weeks ago

White Rock RCMP Staff Sgt. Kale Pauls has released a report on mental health and policing in the city. (File photos)
White Rock’s top cop wants to bill local health authority for lengthy mental-health calls

‘Suggestion’ included in nine-page review calling for ‘robust’ support for healthcare-led response

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Oct. 20

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

100 Mile Conservation officer Joel Kline gingerly holds an injured but very much alive bald eagle after extracting him from a motorist’s minivan. (Photo submitted)
B.C. driver thought he retrieved a dead bald eagle – until it came to life in his backseat

The driver believed the bird to be dead and not unconscious as it turned out to be

A Le Chateau retail store is shown in Montreal on Wednesday July 13, 2016. Le Chateau Inc. says it is seeking court protection from creditors under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act to allow it to liquidate its assets and wind down its operations.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Clothing retailer Le Chateau plans to close its doors, files for CCAA protection

Le Chateau said it intends to remain fully operational as it liquidates its 123 stores

Green party Leader Sonia Furstenau arrives to announce her party’s election platform in New Westminster, B.C., on October 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. Green party says it’s raised nearly $835,000 in 38 days

NDP Leader John Horgan is holding his final virtual campaign event

U.S. border officers at the Peace Arch crossing arrested two men on California warrants this week. (File photo)
Ottawa predicts system delays, backlogs unless court extends life of refugee pact

Canada and the United States recognize each other as safe places to seek protection

BC Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson,  BC NDP leader John Horgan and BC Green leader Sonia Furstenau. (File)
B.C. VOTES 2020: Climate change and sustainability promises from the parties

Snap election has led to a short campaign; here’s the lowdown on the platforms

Most Read