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Crucial Risk Factors for Coronavirus Deaths

July 10, 2020 05:53AM
Study of 17 Million Identifies Crucial Risk Factors for Coronavirus Deaths

[www.nytimes.com]

An analysis of more than 17 million people in England — the largest study of its kind, according to its authors — has pinpointed a bevy of factors that can raise a person’s chances of dying from COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.

The paper, published Wednesday in Nature, echoes reports from other countries that identify older people, men, racial and ethnic minorities, and those with underlying health conditions among the more vulnerable populations.

“This highlights a lot of what we already know about COVID-19,” said Uchechi Mitchell, a public health expert at the University of Illinois at Chicago who was not involved in the study. “But a lot of science is about repetition. The size of the study alone is a strength, and there is a need to continue documenting disparities.”

The researchers mined a trove of de-identified data that included health records from about 40% of England’s population, collected by the United Kingdom’s National Health Service. Of 17,278,392 adults tracked over three months, 10,926 reportedly died of COVID-19 or COVID-19-related complications.

“A lot of previous work has focused on patients that present at hospital,” said Dr. Ben Goldacre of the University of Oxford, one of the authors on the study. “That’s useful and important, but we wanted to get a clear sense of the risks as an everyday person. Our starting pool is literally everybody.”

Goldacre’s team found that patients older than 80 were at least 20 times more likely to die from COVID-19 than those in their 50s and hundreds of times more likely to die than those below the age of 40. The scale of this relationship was “jaw-dropping,” Goldacre said.

Additionally, men stricken with the virus had a higher likelihood of dying than women of the same age. Medical conditions such as obesity, diabetes, severe asthma and compromised immunity were also linked to poor outcomes, in keeping with guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the United States. And the researchers noted that a person’s chances of dying also tended to track with socioeconomic factors like poverty.

The data roughly mirror what has been observed around the world and are not necessarily surprising, said Avonne Connor, an epidemiologist at Johns Hopkins University who was not involved in the study. But seeing these patterns emerge in a staggeringly large data set “is astounding” and “adds another layer to depicting who is at risk” during this pandemic, Connor said.

Particularly compelling were the study’s findings on race and ethnicity, said Sharrelle Barber, an epidemiologist at Drexel University who was not involved in the study. Roughly 11% of the patients tracked by the analysis identified as nonwhite. The researchers found that these individuals — particularly Black and South Asian people — were at higher risk of dying from COVID-19 than white patients.

That trend persisted even after Goldacre and his colleagues made statistical adjustments to account for factors like age, sex and medical conditions, suggesting that other factors are playing a major role.

An increasing number of reports have pointed to the pervasive social and structural inequities that are disproportionately burdening racial and ethnic minority groups around the world with the coronavirus’s worst effects.

Some experts pointed out flaws in the researchers’ methodology that made it difficult to quantify the exact risks faced by members of the vulnerable groups identified in the study. For instance, certain medical conditions that can exacerbate COVID-19, like chronic heart disease, are more prevalent among Black people than white people.

The researchers removed such variables to focus solely on the effects of race and ethnicity. But because Black individuals are also more likely to experience stress and be denied access to medical care in many parts of the world, the disparity in rates of heart disease may itself be influenced by racism, said Usama Bilal, an epidemiologist at Drexel University who was not involved in the new analysis. Ignoring the contribution of heart disease, then, could end up inadvertently discounting part of the relationship between race and ethnicity and COVID-19-related deaths.

The study was also not set up to conclusively show cause-and-effect relationships between risk factors and COVID-19 deaths.

Regardless of the methodological drawbacks of this study, experts agree that “the causes of disparities, whether in COVID-19 or other aspects of health, are intricately linked to structural racism,” Mitchell said.

In the United States, Latino and African American residents are three times as likely to become infected by the coronavirus as white residents, and nearly twice as likely to die.

Many of these individuals work as front-line employees or are tasked with essential in-person jobs that prevent them from sheltering in place at home. Some live in multigenerational households that can compromise effective physical distancing. Others must cope with language barriers and implicit bias when they seek medical care.

Any study publishing data on an ongoing and fast-shifting pandemic will inevitably be imperfect, said Julia Raifman, an epidemiologist at Boston University who was not involved in the study.

But the new paper helps address “a real paucity of data on race,” Raifman added. “These disparities are not just happening in the United States.”

With regard to the racial inequities in this pandemic, Barber said, “I think what we’re seeing is real, and it’s not a surprise. We can learn from this study and improve on it. It gives us clues into what might be happening.”
SubjectAuthorViewsPosted

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  Re: My thoughts are...

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  like the old Dizzy Dean line........

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  Re: Got my Covid test 2 days ago. Results are in.... "Negative". It's like everyone figured..

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ramBRO135July 10, 2020 10:28AM

  Hey I like this thread and appreciate the posts

ferragamo79102July 10, 2020 02:57PM

  Re: Hey I like this thread and appreciate the posts

zn92July 10, 2020 03:22PM

  I agree.

Ramgator96July 13, 2020 05:07PM

  Israel & world's worst second wave

zn92July 11, 2020 07:09AM

  Why are young, healthy people dying of coronavirus?

zn94July 11, 2020 07:28AM

  "Hundreds have died"

PHDram103July 11, 2020 07:54AM

  nope

zn100July 11, 2020 08:31AM

  yup

PHDram103July 11, 2020 08:48AM

  Re: yup

zn96July 11, 2020 10:29AM

  Huh?

PHDram88July 11, 2020 10:33AM

  is there a "post-covid 19 syndrome" ie. longterm effects

zn122July 11, 2020 09:31AM

  covid survivors can suffer weeks after virus clears

zn99July 11, 2020 12:50PM

  "Though there is no data on long-term effects"

PHDram93July 11, 2020 09:16PM

  yet

zn89July 12, 2020 04:28AM

  Re: yet

PHDram79July 12, 2020 06:03AM

  where we are in terms of discovering its long-term impacts

zn89July 12, 2020 09:09AM

  Re: where we are in terms of discovering its long-term impacts

zn87July 12, 2020 09:49AM

  Re: 2 where we are in terms of discovering its long-term impacts

zn105July 13, 2020 03:32PM

  more on longterm effects ... 7/14

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  a simple plasma shot could prevent covid, but.......

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PHDram94July 11, 2020 09:45PM

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AlbaNY_Ram86July 12, 2020 08:23AM

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  Disney World reopened

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ramBRO93July 13, 2020 04:27PM

  Only in the US..

sstrams127July 14, 2020 04:54AM

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PHDram82July 14, 2020 01:18PM

  Interesting Article About Mask Wearing

ramBRO99July 14, 2020 01:33PM

  Re: Interesting Article About Mask Wearing

MamaRAMa111July 14, 2020 01:52PM

  Re: Interesting Article About Mask Wearing

ramBRO88July 14, 2020 02:16PM

  Re: Interesting Article About Mask Wearing

MamaRAMa101July 16, 2020 01:49PM

  Re: Interesting Article About Mask Wearing

zn92July 16, 2020 04:01PM

  first vaccine tested in the U.S. for the coronavirus

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  UPDATE: Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid Vaccine Study...7/20

zn75July 20, 2020 05:49AM

  A New Understanding of Herd Immunity

PHDram80July 14, 2020 04:15PM

  a new unproven theory of Herd Immunity + warnings that it probably isn't enough

zn93July 14, 2020 04:46PM

  Well new is kinda in the title

PHDram78July 14, 2020 05:45PM

  Re: A New Understanding of Herd Immunity

ramBRO90July 14, 2020 05:44PM

  Re: A New Understanding of Herd Immunity

waterfield84July 14, 2020 08:19PM

  Tate Reeves, Republican Governor of Mississippi, on "herd immunity"

zn102July 15, 2020 03:43PM

  Re: Tate Reeves, Republican Governor of Mississippi, on "herd immunity"

Rampage2K-129July 15, 2020 07:13PM

  wishful thinking?

zn89July 15, 2020 08:28PM

  Re: wishful thinking?

Rampage2K-86July 15, 2020 08:42PM

  Re: wishful thinking?

zn103July 15, 2020 08:51PM

  Was wearing masks

PHDram77July 15, 2020 09:53PM

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PHDram88July 16, 2020 04:16AM

  deaths are rising again (7/16)

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MamaRAMa120July 18, 2020 04:19AM

  21-year old thought he had mild case of CPVID-19 then went into organ failure

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  Re: 21-year old thought he had mild case of CPVID-19 then went into organ failure

waterfield52August 15, 2020 12:18PM

  CDC director: We can control virus in 4-8 weeks if everyone in US wears a mask

zn89July 18, 2020 06:29PM

  out today and less than half people wearing mask

ferragamo7993July 18, 2020 06:31PM

  Re: out today and less than half people wearing mask

waterfield82July 18, 2020 08:04PM

  Re: out today and less than half people wearing mask

zn83July 18, 2020 09:34PM

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PHDram97July 19, 2020 06:16AM

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  Interesting...i recall hearing about the cholesterol connection earlier

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  Re: What would happen if they got it again?

zn73July 30, 2020 06:21AM

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  Re: Sweden Sees COVID-19 Cases Plummet as Rest of Europe Suffers Spike

AlbaNY_Ram82July 30, 2020 10:09AM

  Re: Sweden Sees COVID-19 Cases Plummet as Rest of Europe Suffers Spike

zn81July 30, 2020 11:39AM

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PHDram83July 30, 2020 01:14PM

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zn120August 02, 2020 10:04AM

  A couple of other interesting thoughts from the author

PHDram71August 02, 2020 11:13AM

  Re: A couple of other interesting thoughts from the author

Rampage2K-88August 02, 2020 12:21PM

  Re: it;s not just deaths

Rampage2K-84August 02, 2020 12:17PM

  Re: it;s not just deaths

zn70August 03, 2020 05:32AM

  i was under the impression

PHDram66August 03, 2020 05:56AM

  don;t speak for other people

zn72August 03, 2020 06:42AM

  It contributes nothing.

PHDram81August 03, 2020 07:37AM

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PHDram91August 04, 2020 03:44AM

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Rampage2K-89August 04, 2020 10:41AM

  from that

zn74August 04, 2020 11:55AM

  Re: deja vu all over again: The Mask Slackers of 1918

AlbaNY_Ram86August 04, 2020 01:29PM

  Re: deja vu all over again: The Mask Slackers of 1918

Rampage2K-83August 04, 2020 02:31PM

  The Pro-Virus Movement. NM

Atlantic Ram68August 11, 2020 02:43PM

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ramBRO71August 09, 2020 07:52AM

  Population immunity is slowing down the pandemic

PHDram86August 12, 2020 03:40AM

  Re: Population immunity is slowing down the pandemic

zn85August 13, 2020 05:14PM

  we really need to understand how the immune system reacts to the coronavirus

zn75August 14, 2020 05:42AM

  I agree with the guy you quoted

Atlantic Ram84August 14, 2020 02:35PM

  Re: I agree with the guy you quoted

zn78August 14, 2020 03:10PM

  There's not 1 metric for success

PHDram68August 16, 2020 05:49PM

  yeah we know

zn67August 16, 2020 07:09PM

  Re: yeah we know

zn78August 16, 2020 07:31PM

  What do you think of this idea...

Atlantic Ram73August 16, 2020 08:27PM

  Re: What do you think of this idea...

zn70August 17, 2020 04:29AM

  Yup. There's lots of alternatives

PHDram67August 17, 2020 04:30AM

  What if ‘Herd Immunity’ Is Closer Than Scientists Thought?

PHDram77August 17, 2020 03:17PM

  Re: What if ‘Herd Immunity’ Is Closer Than Scientists Thought?

ramBRO80August 17, 2020 05:11PM

  Re: What if ‘Herd Immunity’ Is Closer Than Scientists Thought?

PHDram53August 17, 2020 06:53PM

  Re: What if ‘Herd Immunity’ Is Closer Than Scientists Thought?

ramBRO85August 17, 2020 08:17PM

  Re: What if ‘Herd Immunity’ Is Closer Than Scientists Thought?

PHDram58August 18, 2020 06:23AM

  I disagree

zn55August 18, 2020 06:47AM

  not sure what your disagreeing with

PHDram46August 18, 2020 07:58AM

  Re: What if ‘Herd Immunity’ Is Closer Than Scientists Thought?

waterfield55August 18, 2020 07:55AM

  Re: What if ‘Herd Immunity’ Is Closer Than Scientists Thought?

PHDram52August 18, 2020 08:32AM

  Re: What if ‘Herd Immunity’ Is Closer Than Scientists Thought?

waterfield50August 18, 2020 08:26PM

  One-size Covid policy doesn’t not fit all. (Article)

Rams4347August 18, 2020 08:25AM

  Re: One-size Covid policy doesn’t not fit all. (Article)

ramBRO51August 18, 2020 05:08PM

  Re: One-size Covid policy doesn’t not fit all. (Article)

AlbaNY_Ram50August 18, 2020 05:30PM

  Re: One-size Covid policy doesn’t not fit all. (Article)

ramBRO56August 18, 2020 06:54PM

  Just saw my internist

waterfield63August 18, 2020 03:12PM

  Re: Just saw my internist

MamaRAMa64August 18, 2020 03:25PM

  Re: Just saw my internist

waterfield52August 18, 2020 07:40PM

  Re: Just saw my internist

zn50August 18, 2020 08:24PM

  It's time to come to grips with what this means...

JamesJM64August 18, 2020 08:37PM

  Re: It's time to come to grips with what this means...

zn62August 18, 2020 09:01PM

  What I find is that...

JamesJM50August 18, 2020 09:30PM

  Re: What I find is that...

zn60August 18, 2020 10:09PM

  In all sincerity, ZN...

JamesJM53August 18, 2020 10:35PM

  Re: In all sincerity, ZN...

zn55August 18, 2020 10:44PM

  Why me? (nm)

JamesJM43August 18, 2020 10:54PM

  Re: Why me? (nm)

zn49August 18, 2020 11:18PM

  That was answered.. in unequivocal terms..

JamesJM55August 18, 2020 11:24PM

  Re: That was answered.. in unequivocal terms..

zn60August 18, 2020 11:50PM

  Re: It's time to come to grips with what this means...

ramBRO92August 19, 2020 04:53AM

  theories?

PHDram72August 19, 2020 05:20AM

  Re: theories?

ramBRO65August 19, 2020 06:26AM

  Re: theories?

AlbaNY_Ram63August 19, 2020 06:49AM

  Re: theories?

ramBRO65August 19, 2020 07:12AM

  Re: theories?

AlbaNY_Ram73August 19, 2020 02:32PM

  Re: theories?

PHDram61August 19, 2020 04:35PM

  cost benefit

PHDram63August 19, 2020 10:57AM

  Re: cost benefit

AlbaNY_Ram66August 19, 2020 02:15PM

  Re: cost benefit

PHDram78August 19, 2020 05:01PM

  Re: cost benefit

waterfield59August 19, 2020 09:57PM

  i disagree

PHDram64August 20, 2020 05:10AM

  Re: i disagree

waterfield55August 20, 2020 09:37AM

  Re: i disagree

zn48August 20, 2020 09:59AM

  no it doesnt sound familiar.

PHDram55August 20, 2020 11:55AM

  Re: no it doesnt sound familiar.

waterfield52August 20, 2020 01:40PM

  Re: no it doesnt sound familiar.

PHDram54August 20, 2020 04:52PM

  Re: no it doesnt sound familiar.

waterfield50August 20, 2020 07:48PM

  Re: no it doesnt sound familiar.

zn55August 20, 2020 08:38PM

  Re: no it doesnt sound familiar.

PHDram50August 21, 2020 11:35AM

  Re: no it doesnt sound familiar.

waterfield55August 21, 2020 12:04PM

  Isn't that what I said above?

PHDram48August 22, 2020 03:26PM

  gotcha

PHDram61August 19, 2020 10:49AM

  Re: Just saw my internist

ramBRO87August 18, 2020 03:38PM

  He was scary

RamUK70August 20, 2020 08:03AM

  Doctors worldwide are recording more deaths due to lockdowns than to Covid...

Rams4366August 20, 2020 09:36AM

  I can’t believe this is a real article

Atlantic Ram55August 23, 2020 05:19AM

  A thank you to those who have posted in this thread

AlbaNY_Ram56August 21, 2020 06:26AM

  Absolutely what AlbaNY said ^^^^

RAMbler48August 21, 2020 11:38AM