Risk of dying from Covid-19 higher for ethnic minorities

Cheryl Sanders
June 3, 2020

The UK government has published a report showing that black people are the most common ethnic group to be diagnosed with COVID-19, while people of Bangladeshi ethnicity have a 50 percent greater risk of dying from the disease compared with white British people. "Black lives matter, as do those in the poorest areas of our country which have worse health outcomes".

This is the precise opposite of previous years, when mortality rates of every cause were lower in Asian and black ethnic groups.

The report by Public Health England (PHE) to examine disparities in how the disease affected people, showed there was a significant disproportionate effect on ethnic minorities, while confirming death tolls among the elderly were far higher.

An analysis of the disproportionate effect the coronavirus outbreak in the United Kingdom appears to be having on members of ethnic minority groups has found that those of Bangladeshi ethnicity had around twice the risk of dying with the virus than white British people.


Those from Chinese, Indian, Pakistani, other Asian, Caribbean and other black ethnicities had between a 10% and 50% higher risk of death. Among females, deaths were nearly three times higher in this period in black, mixed and "other" groups, and around two and a half times higher in Asian females compared with 1.6 times in white females. Other diseases that frequently appeared alongside Covid-19 on death certificates were hypertensive diseases, chronic kidney disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and dementia.

It added that "emerging evidence" has also suggested that a better understanding is needed of the impact of obesity on Covid-19 outcomes "particularly".

"People are understandably angry about injustices and as Health Secretary I feel a deep responsibility because this pandemic has exposed huge disparities in the health of our nation".

THE GOVERNMENT commissioned review into the impact of COVID-19 on black, Asian and minority ethnic groups has been labelled a missed opportunity and criticised for its lack of recommendations.


Up to May 26, 2020, 707 people of Indian-origin have died of Covid-19 in NHS hospitals, making up 3% of the total 26,050 Covid-19 deaths that have taken place in hospitals.

He said: 'The BMA and the wider community were hoping for a clear action plan to tackle the issues, not a re-iteration of what we already know.

'We would like PHE to look at occupations, and provide recommendations on how our members can mitigate their risks in their particular jobs.

De Cordova added: "There is a gross irony in delaying the release of a report into the unequal suffering of the BAME community, on the basis of global events that relate to the suffering of black communities around the world".


Other reports by iNewsToday

FOLLOW OUR NEWSPAPER