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64YO Magic Johnson Warns the World of Deadly Virus That Could Kill Over 14,000 People Aged 65+: “177,000 Adults… Are Hospitalized”

Published 09/29/2023, 6:30 AM EDT

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NBA icon Magic Johnson is one of the biggest health advocates in the country. Ever since his HIV infection, Magic has been helping by creating awareness about the virus and bringing other similar issues into the limelight. Johnson and his wife Cookie were recently honored for their outstanding work in this regard. Apart from this, the 64-year-old has also generated awareness about another dangerous virus, which has risen in prevalence as a side effect of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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When he was infected in the early 1990s, Johnson and his family struggled to come to terms with this paradigm shift. However, they educated themselves about the disease, following experts’ advice, and it has helped them in the years that followed. The Los Angeles Lakers legend has also been helping HIV-infected people with health care, shelter, and other necessities.

Magic Johnson is determined to create awareness


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At 64, Magic Johnson is healthy and not showing any signs of slowing down as he continues his good work in health advocacy. Recently, Johnson joined hands with GSK to educate older adults about the respiratory syncytial virus, or RSV infection. RSV is reportedly a common contagious virus that causes infections of the respiratory tract, which could be life-threatening for older adults.

via Reuters

According to a report from The Healthy, RSV infection has risen in prevalence as a side effect of the COVID-19 pandemic. So the 5x NBA champion is looking to educate people about the prevention of the disease. As per the report, Magic was asked why he is speaking about RSV now.


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He replied, “Now that I am 64 myself, this RSV is something that is in my wheelhouse. Think about the fact that approximately 177,000 adults aged 65 and over are hospitalized from RSV and 14,000 will die from it. This is who I am. RSV can wipe you out, and you have got to educate yourself on it and make sure you talk to your doctor.”

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When asked how he stays healthy from cold, flu, and RSV, Johnson stated that he gets all the vaccinations his doctor suggests. He noted that he wants to live a long life and that he will take every vaccination required to help him stay healthy.


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Cookie and Magic Johnson’s work was recognized

The successful basketball career of Magic Johnson was cut short by his HIV infection. His wife Cookie was a huge rock of support to him throughout the years. Furthermore, she is also a huge part of her husband’s HIV advocacy. The couple was recently presented with the Elizabeth Taylor Commitment to End AIDS Award for their immense work.

After the test results came out, Johnson immediately announced his retirement. The whole situation was a major shock to everyone in the sports world. Many feared the worst, including Magic, who thought it was a death sentence.


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However, he and his family learned more about the disease, which helped him live his life to the fullest. And now, he makes sure others don’t have to suffer from the same.

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Written by:

Bagavathi Eswaran


One take at a time

Bagavathi Eswaran is a senior NBA writer at EssentiallySports, with a strong passion for the sport that started at the young age of ten. As a former college player, Bagavathi has been following the NBA for more than a decade and has found his calling in writing about the sport. His expertise in covering the NBA, as well as other arenas of the sport, is evident in his writing.
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Edited by:

Aakash Nair