Daniel Halliday
Apr 24 · Last update 2 mo. ago.

What is causing a racial divide in coronavirus deaths?

Growing evidence is indicating there are racial divides in the number of COVID-19 fatalities in both Britain and the United States. Early statistical studies seem to show that black Americans and all British ethnic minorities are much more likely to face hospitalisation as they seem to be the worst effected by the virus in these societies. What is causing the racial divide in coronavirus deaths in the UK and America? bbc.com/news/uk-52255863 npr.org/sections/coronavirus-live-updates/2020/04/08/830030932/cdc-hospital-data-point-to-racial-disparity-in-covid-19-cases
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Health and the full picture of the statistics
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Ethnic minorities and people living with disabilities face the biggest challenges
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This divisive issue should be looked into after the pandemic
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Inequality
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It’s not just economic...
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Health and the full picture of the statistics

Multiple studies are currently underway investigating the link between vitamin D deficiencies and the susceptibility/mortality rates of COVID-19. Preliminary results have shown a high correlation between low levels of vitamin D and COVID-19 fatalities across both Europe and South East Asia. It has also previously been established that people of African decent are more likely to have insufficient vitamin D levels, as skin pigmentation is known to cause reduced vitamin D production in the skin. While those of African decent living in colder climates are extremely at risk of vitamin D deficiency as their ancestors had adapted to live in equatorial regions of the world where there is an abundance of sun and therefore naturally higher levels of vitamin D.

Of course this area needs much more research, as inequality statistics don’t fully account for the massive COVID-19 fatality rates of ethnic minorities in the US and UK, and other studies and pandemic statistics can help paint a fuller picture of the trends that are under way. But vitamin D could possible be a very logical missing piece of the puzzle that would add extra detail to the other obvious factors such as poverty, less access to healthcare and poverty induced diet and lifestyles. However as vitamin D deficiency is a trend globally this may prove to be vital missing piece of the puzzle for humanity in the battle to overcome the pandemic.

sciencealert.com/covid-deaths-are-being-linked-with-vitamin-d-deficiency-here-s-what-that-means aljazeera.com/ajimpact/people-deprived-uk-areas-times-likelier-covid-19-200516081603430.html webmd.com/food-recipes/qa/how-can-dark-skin-lead-to-vitamin-d-deficiency msn.com/en-gb/health/familyhealth/bame-people-are-being-disproportionally-affected-by-covid-19-why/ar-BB134W4A academic.oup.com/jn/article/136/4/1126/4664238 youtu.be/4_ZJ8YDOX6g?t=1811

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Daniel Halliday
Jun 6
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DH edited this paragraph
https://www.sciencealert.com/covid-deaths-are-being-linked-with-vitamin-d-deficiency-here-s-what-that-means https://www.aljazeera.com/ajimpact/people-deprived-uk-areas-times-likelier-covid-19-200516081603430.html https://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/qa/how-can-dark-skin-lead-to-vitamin-d-deficiency https://www.msn.com/en-gb/health/familyhealth/bame-people-are-being-disproportionally-affected-by-covid-19-why/ar-BB134W4A https://academic.oup.com/jn/article/136/4/1126/4664238 https://youtu.be/4_ZJ8YDOX6g?t=1811

Ethnic minorities and people living with disabilities face the biggest challenges

The coronavirus has been unfairly fatal for black people, but there is also an extra layer of complexity and vulnerability for those with disabilities, who may find difficulty in enacting social distancing, with physical barriers, accessing information or even overcoming compulsions that break pandemic regulations. This may lead to new tragic occurrences presenting themselves as the pandemic develops, because people with disabilities are uniquely vulnerable and often feel marginalised, as media tends to focus on the elderly and other vulnerable groups. As people with disabilities are facing unique challenges, disabled ethnic minorities may face an unbelievable combination of disparities, and disabilities should therefore not be left out of the discussion of health and social inequality moving forward. Conversely people with disabilities, and even severe disabilities, could be unique resources to society in a pandemic, being familiar with social isolation, they could in fact be roll models for society, teaching skills useful in the pandemic, stay connected getting involved remotely and keeping boredom at bay.

aljazeera.com/programmes/thestream/2020/04/coronavirus-impacting-people-disabilities-200419182213083.html

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Daniel Halliday
May 17
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This divisive issue should be looked into after the pandemic

It is dangerous to publish racially divisive information in a pandemic; we have already seen what happened with anti-Chinese racism during the beginning of the pandemic, and other racial issues, especially in the US, have been much more heated recently. The issue of racial divides have negative effects on both ethic minorities and on the whole of society, and have caused some to worry such divides will cause an increase in violence if pushed further [1]. Racial tensions desperately need to be deescalated in a country like the US where racial divides have been responsible for a loss of trust in medicine in the black community [2], and where legally armed black militias have recently began to patrol neighbourhoods after the racist murder of Ahmaud Arbery in Georgia, an open carry state [3].

bbc.com/news/world-europe-51294305 [1] lawenforcementtoday.com/racial-divide-police [2] buzzfeednews.com/article/danvergano/coronavirus-medical-racism dispatch.com/news/20200420/coronavirus-racial-disparities-come-into-focus-for-columbus-franklin-county [3] newsone.com/3940390/ahmaud-arbery-armed-black-protesters-patrol-georgia-neighborhood

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Daniel Halliday
May 17
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Inequality

While we can all be infected by SARS-CoV-2, we are seemingly all in the struggle against COVID-19 together, but it became clear quickly that there is a strict class divide in this pandemic. The most affluent were able to self-isolate in a second home away form the big cities, while the middle classes were able to work from home over the Internet, leaving working class people to be put in a dangerous positions, being forced to work beyond what seemed safe, or just loosing work entirely. However early statistics are now showing that these divides in how people are able to react to the virus are largely racial also, with 35% of critically ill patients being ethnic minorities in the UK more than double their representation in the population.

Likewise in the US, Louisiana is showing a 70% fatality rate in African Americans despite them making up 32% of the population, while the same rate has presented itself in Michigan with an even lower black population of 30%. The UK has some of the highest levels of inequality in the Europe, while inequality in the US is even higher, and this level of disparity is more likely to affect black people and people from ethnic minorities in both regions, poverty is literally a limiting factor in a citizens ability to seek healthcare in the United States. These inequalities have then carried with them health disparities not just in the US but universally, as unhealthy food is marketed to and priced for those on lower incomes. Shorter lives are the unfair price working class and especially working class minority populations are facing, as unequal societies strive to profit from their own inequalities, and this has become overtly clear during COVID-19.

theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/apr/08/coronavirus-black-people-ethnic-minority-deaths-pandemic-inequality-afua-hirsch theguardian.com/news/2019/sep/09/inequality-is-it-rising-and-can-we-reverse-it futurity.org/racial-ethnic-inequalities-united-states-1467732-2 euractiv.com/section/economy-jobs/interview/professor-there-is-a-link-between-poverty-and-unhealthy-diets realnatural.org/fast-food-firms-target-low-income-minorities

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Daniel Halliday
May 17
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DH edited this paragraph
Likewise in the US, Louisiana is showing a 70% fatality rate in African Americans despite them making up 32% of the population, while the same rate has presented itself in Michigan with an even lower black population of 30%. The UK has some of the highest levels of inequality in the Europe, while inequality in the US is even higher, and this level of disparity is more likely to affect black people and people from ethnic minorities in both regions, poverty is literally a limiting factor in a citizens ability to seek healthcare in the United States. These inequalities have then carried with them health disparities not just in the US but universally, as unhealthy food is marketed to and priced for those on lower incomes. Shorter lives are the unfair price working class and especially working class minority populations are facing, as unequal societies strive to profit from their own inequalities, and this has become overtly clear during COVID-19.

It’s not just economic...

If this issue were simply a case of economics then this would only be apparent in the US due to citizen's health insurance being tied to employment, but the fact that it is occurring also in the UK, a country with a free national health system, makes it clear other issues are at play here. Health vulnerabilities are not as simple as pure economics, although many of the contributing issues are linked to poverty in some way also; racial inequalities in health, education, housing, and employment exist in both the UK and the US. These are divisions of poverty, there are racial divides of in many aspects of life that leave minorities more at risk of catching contagious diseases and more at risk of having a fatal reaction to a contagious disease, it is important not to hide these issues all behind poverty as racial inequality goes far deeper.

All of these factors open up scenarios that lead to ethnic minorities being more likely to be exposed to the virus, being more likely to work insecure, low-paid work, be unemployed, or to live in overcrowded housing. In addition to a statistical propensity to have underlying health conditions, which is itself a complex mixture of poverty, a failure of education, and inadequate preventative healthcare, leaving racial minorities more vulnerable to COVID-19 on multiple levels. Poverty is just part of the picture here, the inequality that ethnic minorities face in the UK and America is much more multifaceted than a simple matter of wealth.

theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/apr/20/coronavirus-racial-inequality-uk-housing-employment-health-bame-covid-19 tcf.org/content/report/racism-inequality-health-care-african-americans npr.org/sections/health-shots/2020/04/01/824874977/underlying-health-disparities-could-mean-coronavirus-hits-some-communities-harde

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Daniel Halliday
May 17
Approved
DH edited this paragraph
If this issue were simply a case of economics then this would only be apparent in the US due to citizen's health insurance being tied to employment, but the fact that it is occurring also in the UK, a country with a free national health system, makes it clear other issues are at play here. Health vulnerabilities are not as simple as pure economics, although many of the contributing issues are linked to poverty in some way also; racial inequalities in health, education, housing, and employment exist in both the UK and the US. These are divisions of poverty, there are racial divides of in many aspects of life that leave minorities more at risk of catching contagious diseases and more at risk of having a fatal reaction to a contagious disease, it is important not to hide these issues all behind poverty as racial inequality goes far deeper.
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