Coronavirus (Covid-19) Guidance

Understandably many people with Porphyria are concerned about coronavirus. The situation is constantly changing, we suggest the best way for you to keep up to date on recommended actions is to check on the South African Government website for new information.

Am I At A Greater Risk Of Coronavirus Due To My Having Porphyria?

It is thought, that for the majority of people with porphyria, you will be at no greater risk of contracting Covid-19 or at any greater risk of an adverse outcome than the general population. Please follow the advice provided by the South African government or WHO.

If you have very active acute porphyria (receiving regular Normasang), your medical team will  advice you if you need if you need to take any additional precautions.

People with active acute porphyria need to take into consideration that any infection can cause an attack in acute porphyria, so catching the virus could cause an attack even if you are normally quite well. This would not be good for you and would also put increased pressure on the health services at a time of great strain. For this reason, it would seem sensible to err on the side of caution and consider yourself more at risk.

If you have other health complications (whether connected to your porphyria or not), such as asthma, heart failure, chronic kidney or liver disease, you most likely fall into the category of ‘underlying health conditions‘. If you are in this group, you are also considered to be vulnerable.

How Can I Protect Myself?

  • Regularly wash your hands thoroughly (for 20 seconds) with soap and water.

  • Wash your hands when you get home or get to work.

  • Wear a face mask as per government guidance.

  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.

  • Put used tissues in the bin straight away and wash your hands afterwards.

  • Avoid close contact with people who are unwell.

  • Avoid touching your face.

If you have a new cough, loss of smell or taste, or high temperature, you should arrange for a Covid-19 test and stay at home for the period advised by the government / WHO