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Media opportunity: New research finds Canadians over 50 experience mobility deficits even with mild to moderate cases of COVID‑19

Posted by Communications and Marketing on January 13, 2022 in News

New research suggests that Canadians over 50 with confirmed or suspected cases of COVID-19 suffered significant setbacks in their mobility and physical function despite experiencing mild to moderate disease.

Researchers surveyed more than 24,000 people over the age of 50 from across Canada during the initial phase of the lockdown in 2020 to determine the effect of a COVID diagnosis on their mobility. Their findings are published in the journal JAMA Network Open.

They found that middle-aged or older adults with mild cases of COVID-19 had nearly double the odds of worsening mobility and physical function compared to those without. Participants were questioned on their ability to move around their home, do housework and engage in physical activities, like standing up after sitting, going up and down stairs and walking two to three blocks.

Susan Kirkland, a Dalhousie University research professor and head of the Department of Community Health and Epidemiology, co-authored the paper that is believed to be one of the first to evaluate the association between mobility and COVID-19 in older adults.

Dr. Kirkland is available to discuss the research and the need for interventions to gradually restore mobility to pre-disease levels after COVID-19.


Media contact:
Alison Auld
Senior Research Reporter
Communications, Marketing and Creative Services
Dalhousie University
Cell: 1-902-220-0491


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