20 / 03 / 2022

Health inequalities in the US means Black adults are hospitalised at higher rates than Whites during the Omicron wave

Black adults were hospitalized at nearly four times the rate of white adults in the six weeks after Omicron became the predominant coronavirus variant in the United States, according to a study published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The overall rate of hospitalizations associated with the coronavirus over that period — 38.4 per 100,000 adults — was more than double the rate during the previous six months, when the Delta variant had been dominant, the study said.

For non-Hispanic Black adults, the hospitalization rate during the same period was 3.8 times the rate for non-Hispanic white adults. It was also the highest observed rate among “any racial and ethnic group during the pandemic,” the study said.

The study, published Friday, was led by Christopher A. Taylor, a member of the C.D.C.’s Covid-19 Emergency Response Team, and co-written by scientists from universities across the country. It was published in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, a regular report by the agency on infectious disease in the United States, and it was based on data from 99 counties in 14 states.

When Omicron peaked in January, hospitalization rates among the unvaccinated were four times that of people who had received a primary series of Covid vaccinations, and 12 times the rate among adults who had received additional doses or boosters, the study said.