Does PFOA/PFOS Exposure Increase COVID-19 Risk?

August 03, 2020 2 min read

Does PFOA/PFOS Exposure Increase COVID-19 Risk?

Faced with the public health concerns around COVID-19, New Jersey Senator Roberto Mendez, along with 18 other Senators, have created a new emergency health commission to urge the US Department of Health and Human Services to thoroughly investigate the possible relationship between exposure to PFOA/PFAS "Forever Chemicals" in tap water and the risk of contracting the coronavirus with very serious symptoms.

The relationship between PFOA/PFAS and COVID19

The problem with PFOS, which stands for polyfluoroalkyl substances, is long standing, but has not been thoroughly researched.

These substances are commonly referred to among scientists as "the chemicals that never die"or "Forever chemicals" because they have the ability to survive in the environment and the human body for months or even more than a hundred years. PFAS has already been the subject of research and the US Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease has stated that these compounds severely weaken the immune system, leaving people more vulnerable to any infectious disease and causing vaccines to have less effect.

That is why Senator Mendez is looking to find a link between the immune suppression caused by polyfluoroalkyl substances and a greater risk of COVID-19 in New Jersey.

The New Jersey Army conducted its own investigation into the level of contamination of groundwater and over 250 private drinking water wells, observing that up to five of the wells had very high levels of PFAS, ordering their clean-up and total shutdown until further notice.

In light of this finding, several federal legislators began urging for the regulation of these substances, especially if the link with COVID-19 is confirmed. Their request called strongly for the community installation of water filters that would ensure that domestic wastewater is as clean as possible, thus reducing the possibility of contamination and of contracting the coronavirus more easily. However, these projects could take a substantial amount of time and resources.

In the meantime, the New Jersey health commission's investigations are still underway regarding the link between PFOA/PFAS. However, given the research from the US Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease suggesting PFOA/PFAS suppression of the immune system, many observers are finding such a link plausible if not probable.

And although local municipalities have not yet provided ways to treat tap water for these contaminants, it is simple and affordable to filter them out at home. All Seychelle filters are designed and tested to remove PFOA and PFAS, so families can stay safe.