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COVID-19 has further exposed the strong association between race, ethnicity, culture, socioeconomic status and health outcomes and illuminated monumental ethnoracialised differences reflecting the ‘colour of disease’.
Racism, segregation and inequality have been invisibly and pervasively embedded in dominant cultures and social institutions for decades.
The socioeconomic factors that negatively influence health outcomes within the underserved minority communities must be identified and contextualised within historical, political, social and economic remits.
Acquisition of disaggregated data will be vital in identifying gaps in the social determinants of these health disparities and tailoring global policy responses.
As COVID-19 continues to sweep across the globe leaving thousands of victims in its wake, preliminary data from the USA suggest that minorities, especially black people, have been infected and killed at a disproportionate rate across the country.1 The most recent data released by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention suggests that black communities are disproportionately affected (when it comes to hospitalisation and deaths) by the coronavirus. In Illinois, 37% of the total confirmed cases and 45% of COVID-19 deaths are African Americans, although they account for only 16% of the state population.2 There have been similar trends of infections and deaths in Michigan, Missouri, North Carolina and South Carolina. Other evidence also revealed an over-representation of Latinos and Asians in COVID-19 infection rates when compared with their nationwide populations.3
Similar patterns showing disproportionate infections and deaths in various parts of the globe including Asian countries, Nordic countries and the UK have emerged. People belonging to black and Asian ethnic groups were found to be at a higher risk of in-hospital COVID-19 deaths partly due to deprivation compared with white people.4 5 While blacks are more than four times more likely to die from COVID-19, individuals of Bangladeshi, Pakistani, Chinese and mixed ethnic …
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