Modern Family star Sarah Hyland underwent her second kidney transplant in 2017

By Jodi Guglielmi
March 16, 2020 05:01 PM

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Sarah Hyland is urging people to think about one another as the coronavirus puts people at risk.

The actress makes an appearance on Wednesday’s episode of Brad Goreski‘s podcast Brad Behavior, and PEOPLE has an exclusive sneak peek at their conversation. Hyland, 29, discusses how she’s preparing for the pandemic as someone with underlying health issues.

“I am obviously immunocompromised with my transplant history and am on immunosuppressants, so everything in this house is sanitized,” she said, before joking, “I just took a shot of hand sanitizer, so we’re good.”

All kidding aside, Hyland suffers from a condition called kidney dysplasia, which means her kidneys did not develop properly when she was in the womb and frequently form painful cysts. In 2017, she underwent a second kidney transplant after her first one failed.

Amy Sussman/Getty

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With the coronavirus (COVID-19), a highly contagious respiratory virus, being especially dangerous for the elderly, infants and people who are immunocompromised, Hyland says she’s doing her best to “remain calm” and resist the urge panic.

“Say someone gets a 24-hour bug, I get it for a week or more. For me, it’s really dangerous,” she says. “My panic level is pretty high, but I also have a lot of health issues that are very susceptible to stress, so I’m trying to remain calm.”

“My game plan right now is to stay home,” she continues adding that when she is forced to leave the house for existing doctor appointments, she makes sure to wear gloves and a face mask. “I’m just staying home.”

As concern over the fast-spreading illness mounts, Hyland says she’s disappointed in many people’s lack of compassion during such a sensitive time.

RELATED: Officials Warn Millions of Students Could Be Home Through End of Academic Year Due to Coronavirus

“The most annoying thing to me right now are young, healthy people who are raiding grocery stores, who are raiding pharmacies,” she says. “They’re leaving people over the age of 60, who may not have a child to do their shopping for them, left to their own devices.”

Hyland says if her health wasn’t already compromised, she would be among those offering to help shop for the elderly and disabled.

“I think it’s really an important time to practice compassion, love, generosity,” she says. “Let’s learn from something like this.”

“We’re literally dealing with people who could die and I just think it’s really a time to come together,” she adds.

As of Monday, there are at least 3,602 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the United States. Many states and cities have closed schools, including New York City, the largest school district in the country. Worldwide, there are now 173,293 confirmed cases of coronavirus and 6,649 deaths.

The full episode of Brad Behavior, by The LadyGang Network on PodcastOne, is available Wednesday.

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