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As Toronto’s largest shelter grapples with a COVID-19 outbreak, a resident talks about life inside and his worry for the elderly

Dr. Stephen Hwang, a physician with St. Michael’s Hospital who holds a weekly clinic at Seaton House with Toronto’s Inner City Health Associates, told the Star the site had a “significant number” of older men, and residents who dealt with medical conditions that increased their risk for severe COVID-19 infections.

While the shelter houses fewer seniors with acute medical needs than it did a few years ago, as many moved to a separate site, Hwang said there was still a high prevalence of chronic lung disease and cardiovascular disease among residents, as well as a high prevalence of mental health and substance use issues, muscular-skeletal injuries and chronic conditions impairing mobility.

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