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Who should you help during the coronavirus pandemic?
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The homeless often have underlying medical problems

The homeless population often have underlying medical conditions which make them particularly vulnerable in the event they contract the disease. Extra care must be taken in preventing an outbreak within these communities.


We know that those with pre-existing conditions and underlying medical issues are more likely to suffer negative health outcomes as a result of COVID-19. The homeless community has an increased rate of disease, leaving many with compromised immune systems.

The Argument

Sleep deprivation, poor hygiene, and exposure to the elements leave homeless communities at increased risk of disease. This means that a lot of homeless people are immuno-compromised and are at higher risk of death should they contract COVID-19.[1] Many within these communities are already unable to have access to essential health services and preventative care, so many common health conditions go undiagnosed and untreated.[2] This puts them at a unique risk of death from the disease.

Counter arguments

The COVID-19 pandemic has proven to affect the entire human population. While the elderly and those with underlying conditions are of particular risk to complications and death as a result of the disease, young and healthy individuals have proven to be vulnerable to particularly bad bouts with the contagion. While death is less likely to befall them, many young survivors of the disease have reported complications well after the disease has passed.[3] While death may be the worst outcome, we cannot relegate lower-risk populations to face the potential of complications and hospitalization in an effort to prioritize smaller vulnerable populations.



[P1] We must protect those at the highest risk of death. [P2] Those with underlying medical problems and those that are immunocompromised are the most likely to die from COVID-19. [P3] The homeless population is more likely to have underlying health problems.

Rejecting the premises

[Rejecting P1] COVID-19 can cause lasting damage to even those who survive, so we cannot only focus on those at risk of death. [Rejecting P2] Completely healthy adults have been hospitalized and/or died as a result of contracting the disease. [Rejecting P3] Many individuals, across different communities and socioeconomic circumstances are immuno-compromised and suffer from underlying health conditions.


This page was last edited on Friday, 3 Jul 2020 at 18:26 UTC

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