Since the novel coronavirus outbreak began, countless rumors have been spread about the mysterious virus that suddenly overtook the world. One very popular rumor that was initially circulated on the internet and made its way into the real world, was the belief that Black people are immune to the novel coronavirus with the initial outbreak in Wuhan, China. As the virus started to spread outside of Mainland China, this belief was further reinforced by the low numbers in Africa and the Caribbean and the message was carried by celebrities and influencers.
Well, fast forward to where we are today. The virus has spread all over the globe, including Africa, the Caribbean, and all fifty states of the USA. On Tuesday April, 7, 2020, health officials including the U.S. Surgeon General, Jerome Adams and Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and infectious Diseases, sounded the alarm on the data received that shows that Black people in America are at disproportionately higher risk for contracting and dying from COVID-19 than any other racial group. This early data was based on public health records on coronavirus deaths in Louisiana, Illinois, Michigan and New Jersey.
Here are some of the possible reasons:
- Black people in America are disproportionately more likely to have multiple chronic conditions that are comorbidities to the virus, such as asthma, obesity, hypertension, and diabetes.
- There have been extra historical socioeconomic factors and barriers to adequate healthcare in communities of color.
- A lot of African Americans have been conditioned to distrust medical professionals and scientists due to unethical experiments and medical practices in the past.
- There is a large number of Black frontline healthcare workers, transit workers, retail workers, cruise ship workers, airline employees, etc. who make up a large portion of the working class who are essential personnel and thus are more likely to be exposed to the virus.
- Whether or not it was done on purpose, the misinformation that Black people are immune to coronavirus, was dangerous, and led to a cavalier attitude towards a disease that is now proven to affect this population way more than others.
To speak with a healthcare provider at Primary Medical Care Center & Urgent Care Clinic to assess any non-emergency health concerns, including suspected COVID-19 symptoms, please call (305)751-1500 for our Miami-Dade clinic or (954)289-0000 for our Broward clinic. For life-threatening emergencies, always call 911. For coronavirus updates and resources, please visit our website at www.primarymed.com.