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In Chicago, 70% of COVID-19 Deaths Are Black

In Chicago, 70% of COVID-19 Deaths Are Black

By Elliott Ramos and María Inés Zamudio, WBEZ, April 5, 2020. Available Here. 

The COVID-19 virus is killing black residents in Cook County at disproportionately high rates, according to early data analyzed by WBEZ.

While black residents make up only 23% of the population in the county, they account for 58% of the COVID-19 deaths. And half of the deceased lived in Chicago, according to data from the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office. 

As of Saturday, 107 of Cook County’s 183 deaths from COVID-19 were black. In Chicago, 61 of the 86 recorded deaths – or 70% – were black residents. Blacks make up 29% of Chicago’s population.

The majority of the black COVID-19 patients who died had underlying health conditions including respiratory problems and diabetes. Eighty-one percent of them had hypertension, or high blood pressure, diabetes or both.

As the virus continues to spread, the high mortality rate for black residents is alarming.

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