Diabetes Reversal Leader Virta Health Demonstrates Promising Results on Mitigating COVID-19 Severity for People with Type 2 Diabetes

Published on 
June 28, 2021
April 26, 2024

Low rates of hospitalization, ventilation, and mortality highlight key results presented at the American Diabetes Association Scientific Sessions

San Francisco, CA: Virta Health, the leader in type 2 diabetes reversal, today announced promising results on the ability of its treatment to mitigate COVID-19 severity. Presenting abstract data at the American Diabetes Association 2021 Scientific Sessions, the company highlighted low rates of hospitalization, ventilation, and mortality for Virta patients living with type 2 diabetes who also contracted COVID-19.

COVID-19 has created a harrowing set of conditions for people with metabolic disorders. Risk of dying from COVID-19 is twice as high compared to those without diabetes. One study showed that over 50% of COVID hospitalizations were attributed to obesity or type 2 diabetes. 

Today’s announcement underscores the potential of improved metabolic health to radically improve COVID outcomes. Virta observed low rates of hospitalization (11.2%), ventilation (1.8%), and death (0.3%) relative to national reports. For example, a study in the Vanderbilt University Medical Center reported hospitalization, ventilation, and death rates of 44.3%, 5.9%, and 4.8%, respectively, for people living with type 2 diabetes. Weight loss held the strongest association with reduced COVID-19 severity, while accounting for other variables like age, starting weight, and days receiving nutrition therapy.

By helping patients restore blood sugar to normal levels, eliminate medications, and lose significant weight, Virta’s approach directly addresses some of the most important risk factors to minimize the severity of COVID-19 infection.

“Beyond vaccination, improved metabolic health is one of the best defenses we have against COVID severity,” said Dr. Robert Ratner, Chief Medical Officer of Virta Health.

Although significant COVID vaccination progress has been made nationally, more than half of the U.S population remains unvaccinated. Globally the number is significantly less. COVID variants continue to raise concern among health experts, as new variants have shown increased transmissibility and complication severity.

These conditions continue to demand multi-faceted solutions to minimize the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic both in the United States and abroad. Today’s news provides encouraging data on how to do so, while offering critical insight into battling future pandemics where metabolic health plays a central role.

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