The report published Thursday (November 12) reviewed data from 50 studies and found that Black people are two times more likely to die of COVID-19 than white people.
People with Asian backgrounds are one and a half times more likely to contract the virus, according to the study.
The study’s head investigator, Manish Pareek, pointed to the fact that Black people and other ethnic minority groups tend to be essential frontline workers, and are more likely to live in multi-generational households, or with more people in general.
Structural racism and discrimination also play a role in the increased infection rates in Black people, researchers said.
Shirley Sze who also led on the report said, “The clear evidence of increased risk of infection among ethnic minority groups is of urgent public health importance.”
Given these stark differences, Pareek recommended that elderly people and healthcare staff in the Black community should be considered high-risk.
Pareek also suggested that these specific groups should be among the first of those who are given a safe, effective vaccine when it becomes available.
According to Sze, equity in healthcare access should also be prioritized as a way to reduce risk for Black people and other higher risk, vulnerable populations.
Photo: Getty Images