Donald Trump at greater risk of severe Covid-19 illness due to age and weight

By Jane Kirby, PA Health Editor
·2-min read

Watch: Why the president's age and physical condition puts him at 'highest risk' from COVID-19

US President Donald Trump is at higher risk of hospital admission and death from Covid-19 due to his age, gender and weight.

The 74-year-old falls into the high risk group purely because he is male – with men around twice as likely to die from coronavirus as women.

However, his biggest risk factor is his age, with experts concluding that age is by far the strongest predictor of an infected person’s risk of dying.

The US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention says people aged 65 to 74 have a five times higher risk of hospital admission with coronavirus compared with those aged 18 to 29, and a 90% higher risk of death.

Trump
At 6ft 3in and weighing 17st 6lb, Donald Trump is just over the threshold for obesity (Carolyn Kaster/AP)

For people aged 75 to 84, the risk of needing hospital admission jumps to eight times higher, with a 220 times higher risk of death.

Mr Trump is also overweight, though his doctor, Sean Conley, told reporters in June that he is healthy.

Mr Conley reported that Mr Trump weighed 17st 6lb (110.7kg).

Reporters calculated that, at 6ft 3in, the president was just over the threshold for obesity.

Watch: Donald Trump confirms that he and his wife have tested positive for coronavirus

In England in July, Public Health England (PHE) published a review which found a dramatic rise in the risk of hospital admission and death from Covid-19 for people who are overweight or obese.

Experts examined existing studies and concluded that people who are overweight, with a body mass index (BMI) of 25 to 29.9, have a higher risk of needing hospital treatment and poor outcomes.

Meanwhile, having a BMI of 35 to 40 increases the risk of death from coronavirus by 40%, while a BMI over 40 almost doubles the risk compared with people who are a healthy weight.

One study analysed for the report found that, compared with a normal BMI, being overweight increased the risk of admission to intensive care by about 50%, rising to more than double the risk for those with a BMI of 30 to 35, and about a four-fold increased risk for those with a BMI over 35.