The Greenville News recently published an article covering IMPH’s COVID-19 Health Disparities Report, which explores the intersection of racism, race/ethnicity, determinants of health and health outcomes, and how these factors have made COVID-19 deadlier for people of color:

As COVID-19 cases surge and the first vaccine doses are distributed, the pandemic continues to hit Black and Latino communities the hardest.

“When you look at the pandemic, it is really just highlighting the health disparities that were in our population beforehand,” said Shaniece Criss, an assistant professor of health science at Furman University, a Prisma Health board member and a Travelers Rest city councilwoman.

Minority groups are more likely to work in “essential” or “front line” jobs that brings greater risk of exposure to coronavirus. Criss also noted that African Americans have higher rates of lung disease, heart disease, diabetes and obesity, which are all underlying conditions linked to more severe cases of COVID-19.

The South Carolina Institute of Medicine and Public Health released a report which found that Black and Latino communities made up more of the cases than their share of the populations, and that Black communities died at higher rates.

Within the report, the SCIMPH included seven recommendations to reduce health disparities exacerbated by the pandemic.

Read the full story by Marcus Navarro here.