Family Members of IBD Patients

family Members of People with IBD

If you are a family member living in the same household as a high-risk person with IBD, you should avoid being in close proximity with other people, who might give your family member COVID-19, resulting in transmission to you. Family members and people who live with high risk individuals should:

  • Take steps to minimize COVID-19 transmission including sticking to a very small, consistent social circle and avoiding gathering in groups

  • Avoid in-person gatherings where physical distancing is not possible and people are not wearing masks

  • Try to work from home. If not possible, speak to your employer about physical distancing at work

  • Wear a mask in closed indoor spaces or outdoors with others for a prolonged time

  • Clean your residence as well as possible to avoid transmission of the virus. Instructions for disinfecting your residence are available from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 

  • While doing these activities, always maintain a distance of at least 2 arms-length (approximately 2 metres) from others

  • Be aware of local information on numbers of people with COVID-19 in your community (consult your provincial/territorial and municipal health websites); consider additional measures if community cases are increasing or high

  • ​Refer to our guidance for more information on how to self-isolate at home when you may have been exposed and have no symptoms

If you are a family member living in the same household as a high-risk or medium-risk person with IBD, and you are diagnosed with COVID-19, you should consider self-isolating in a part of the house where you have minimal contact with the IBD patients.

Contact your local public health authority for further instructions.

Dr Benchimol and Dr Kaplan photos

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Last Updated: October 7, 2020

  • Canada has among the highest incidence rates of Crohn's and colitis in the world.
  • 1 in 140 Canadians lives with Crohn’s or colitis.
  • Families new to Canada are developing these diseases for the first time.
  • Incidence of Crohn’s in Canadian kids under 10 has doubled since 1995.
  • People are most commonly diagnosed before age 30.