Special Report

Every State’s Number of At-Risk Adults in the Coronavirus Pandemic


To identify how many adults in every state are at risk of serious illness if infected with COVID-19, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed the report “How Many Adults Are at Risk of Serious Illness If Infected with Coronavirus?” published in March and updated in April 2020 by the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonprofit health care policy organization. 

Adults at risk due to age or medical conditions include every state resident 65 and over, as well as individuals 18 and over who report being told by a doctor at some point that they had one of the listed conditions: heart disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), uncontrolled asthma, diabetes, or a BMI greater than 40. KFF’s selection of medical condition was based on CDC information, and medical condition data came from the CDC’s 2018 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS).The data includes adults aged 18 and older but excludes those living in nursing homes and other institutional settings. 

Confirmed COVID-19 cases and deaths are as of April 16 and were obtained by 24/7 Wall St. from state and local health departments. Per capita adjustments were made using population figures from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2018 American Community Survey (ACS). 

The percentage of adults who do not have health insurance (uninsured population), and the percentage of all people who live in households earning an income below the federal poverty level (poverty rate), also came from the ACS.