As the nation is experiencing a dangerous and deadly third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, Black, Indigenous and Latinx people are being hospitalized at a rate four times that of white people, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Specifically, the surveillance summary, which tracks novel coronavirus cases across the country, confirmed an increase in cases since September and a spike in deaths during the first three weeks of October. Between March 1 and November 7, more than 70,000 hospitalization cases were reported and when broken down by race, researchers found:
“The age-adjusted hospitalization rate for Hispanic or Latino persons was approximately 4.2 times that of non-Hispanic white persons. Age-adjusted hospitalization rates for non-Hispanic American Indian or Alaska Native persons and non-Hispanic Black persons were approximately 4.1 and 3.9 times those of non-Hispanic White persons, respectively.”
“We’ve learned a lot about how to treat this disease as well as more about how to prevent it with wearing masks and social distancing,” Lisa Cooper, director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Equity, told ABC17 News about the new data. “The problem is that for people who still are having challenges with access to health care, it doesn’t mean things are getting better for them.”
Cooper also stressed that communities of color “are often uninsured or distrust the health care system. They have higher rates of conditions like hypertension, heart disease, diabetes and obesity, which can lead to more severe reactions to Covid-19.”
The latest CDC #COVIDView report shows that the percentage of people testing positive for #COVID19 and the percentage of COVID-19-associated medical visits are increasing in every region of the United States. Learn more: https://t.co/zP4VYlo0Pb. pic.twitter.com/4VE3HJiJgT— CDC (@CDCgov) November 16, 2020
These findings fall in line with past reports that have found that the crisis has disproportionately impacted Black, Latinx and Indigenous communities. In April, Colorlines reported that Black and Latinx California residents under age 65 were dying more often than their white and Asian American counterparts, according to a new Los Angeles Times analysis. The CDC published a report in August which confirmed “disproportionate COVID-19 impact in American Indian/Alaska Native populations.” That same report notes that it provides Indian Country with more than $200 million to address the disparity.
To view the most recent COVIDView report, click here.