Blacks, Hispanics Unduly Affected By COVID-19-Worsening Conditions

Published: Wednesday, April 28, 2021 - 5:05am
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Members of racial and ethnic minority groups face a higher risk of severe illness and death from COVID-19, due in part to underlying conditions.

New research from the National Center for Health Statistics looks at the prevalence of pre-existing conditions in the U.S. before the pandemic.

Two groups were unduly affected by obesity and diabetes, with rates of 45% among Hispanic adults and 48% among Black adults.

Diabetes affects one in 10 Arizonans and is the seventh-leading cause of death in the state.

In the study, 86% of Black adults had some COVID-19-worsening condition, compared to 75% of all adults, or roughly 180 million Americans.

Moreover, Black women were more likely than white women to have multiple conditions, obesity, severe obesity, diabetes and hypertension. Researchers excluded pregnant women from estimates for obesity, severe obesity, chronic kidney disease, diabetes, hypertension and multiple conditions.

The study bolsters previous work by adding physical exams and labs, which can detect conditions self-reporting might miss.

Such data can help highlight existing health inequities and improve future COVID-19 responses.

Coronavirus Science