Racial and ethnic determinants of Covid-19 risk
David A. Drew,
Mark S Graham,
Erica T. Warner,
Amit D. Joshi,
Raaj S. Mehta,
Joan Capdevila Pujol,
Karla A Lee,
Mary Ni Lochlainn,
Carole Helene Sudre,
Yvette C. Cozier,
Lynne R Wilkens,
Christopher A. Haiman,
Loic Le Marchand,
Julie R. Palmer,
Claire J Steves,
Andrew T. Chan,
Posted 20 Jun 2020
medRxiv DOI: 10.1101/2020.06.18.20134742
Posted 20 Jun 2020
Background Racial and ethnic minorities have disproportionately high hospitalization rates and mortality related to the novel coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19). There are comparatively scant data on race and ethnicity as determinants of infection risk. Methods We used a smartphone application (beginning March 24, 2020 in the United Kingdom [U.K.] and March 29, 2020 in the United States [U.S.]) to recruit 2,414,601 participants who reported their race/ethnicity through May 25, 2020 and employed logistic regression to determine the adjusted odds ratios (aORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for a positive Covid-19 test among racial and ethnic groups. Results We documented 8,858 self-reported cases of Covid-19 among 2,259,841 non-Hispanic white; 79 among 9,615 Hispanic; 186 among 18,176 Black; 598 among 63,316 Asian; and 347 among 63,653 other racial minority participants. Compared with non-Hispanic white participants, the risk for a positive Covid-19 test was increased across racial minorities (aORs ranging from 1.24 to 3.51). After adjustment for socioeconomic indices and Covid-19 exposure risk factors, the associations (aOR [95% CI]) were attenuated but remained significant for Hispanic (1.58 [1.24-2.02]) and Black participants (2.56 [1.93-3.39]) in the U.S. and South Asian (1.52 [1.38-1.67]) and Middle Eastern participants (1.56 [1.25-1.95]) in the U.K. A higher risk of Covid-19 and seeking or receiving treatment was also observed for several racial/ethnic minority subgroups. Conclusions Our results demonstrate an increase in Covid-19 risk among racial and ethnic minorities not completely explained by other risk factors for Covid-19, comorbidities, and sociodemographic characteristics. Further research investigating these disparities are needed to inform public health measures.
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