Press Release/Distributed on 05/27/20

The link between chronic illness, air pollution and COVID-19 death rates is potentially profound. The NYANP offers their leadership in delineating the relationship between comorbidities, social determinants and the environment. The association has created a committee designated to the collation of clinical research and the review of clinical care outcomes for patients exposed to, diagnosed with and recovering from COVID-19.

Tia Trivisonno, ND the President of the NYANP, notes “recovering from the tragedy New York is facing, as an epicenter of coronavirus, will require a deeper look at the contributing factors of health, such as comorbidities, that place New Yorkers at an increased risk of dying from COVID-19.”

The New York State Department of Health’s COVID-19 tracker lists the top 10 comorbidities associated with total deaths from the virus and reports that 89.2% have at least one of them. Diseases of the heart and lungs including hypertension, high cholesterol, COPD and coronary artery disease top the list. Other comorbidities include diabetes, renal disease, dementia and cancer.

Just two weeks prior to the celebration of Earth Day on April 22nd, the New York Times released an article noting a nationwide study responding to pressing global concerns to address the underlying causes of increased COVID-19 fatality rates in certain areas. The correlation of COVID-19 to social determinants was delineated. “Coronavirus patients in areas that had high levels of air pollution before the pandemic are more likely to die from the infection than patients in cleaner parts of the country. We think this correlation is considerable in determining vulnerability, as exposure to ambient air pollution reduces lung function, and increases the incidences of respiratory infections and aggravated asthma,”​ says Dr. Trivisonno.

The New York Association of Naturopathic Physicians represents a membership of doctors deeply committed to providing solutions for a healthier New York. At a time when naturopathic providers are functioning in primary care roles across the nation in licensed states, New Yorkers are denied full access to care by Naturopathic Doctors (ND) who are ready, willing and able to fill the shortage of primary care providers.

The association will continue to support naturopathic doctors who attended accredited naturopathic medical school, to provide leadership in the successful patient implementation of healthy diet, sustainable exercise routines, and stress reduction strategies through the promotion of a healthy lifestyle. The association is promoting its triad of offerings as crucial to the recovery days ahead of New York. Naturopathic Doctors are the nation’s leading experts in the prevention of chronic disease and play an integral role in the recovery efforts ahead. “The one thing we’ve learned, like the rest of New York, is that there is a bleak tomorrow if we can’t do a better job in healthcare; we need to work harder to prevent chronic health issues,” says Dr. Trivisonno.

President of the Washington, D.C. based American Association of Naturopathic Physicians, Dr. Robert Kachko calls for effective solutions for the future of healthcare stating, “Naturopathic Doctors have a tremendous role to play in keeping people out of hospital settings in the first place and helping patients recover after they are discharged. Already, as it relates to COVID-19, naturopathic doctors across the country are serving our communities in many ways, from embracing telemedicine to donning PPE for essential in-person visits.”

The recovery of a healthier New York is dependent upon a more cooperative system of healthcare, one that provides regulation and fully recognizes the necessary resource of naturopathic doctors who offer solutions and individualized guidance for healthy living.

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