LA CROSSE, Wis. (WXOW) - Regarding the COVID 19 virus, medical professionals find that death rates are 2.4 times higher for African-Americans and 1.5 times higher than Latino and indigenous groups.
Health experts explain the reason is because of socio-economic status, thus relating to existing health inequities like higher rates of chronic disease like diabetes and barriers to health access.
Mark Wieland, a doctor for Mayo Clinic Health System, said living conditions also affect contracting COVID 19.
Wieland said racial and ethnic populations tend to live in higher housing density areas and tend to be more housing insecure, making social distancing harder. He further explained that racial and ethnic people tend to have less access to healthy foods, making chronic disease management more difficult. They are less likely to have the privilege of working from home. They are less likely to have paid-sick leave, are more likely to be essential workers during the pandemic, and tend to use public transportation or carpool.
Health experts said they help solve this issue by raising more public awareness to neighborhoods at risk. One way is through community outreach and responding to the ever-chaining facts about the pandemic in real-time.