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COVID-19 has killed at least 65,000 more men than women in US – and black males are at highest risk


COVID-19 has killed at least 65,000 more men than women in the U.S., a new analysis finds.

Researchers from the Brookings Institution, in Washington, CDC, looked at Covid cases and deaths between February 2020 and August 2021.

They found that that about 362,000 American males have died of the virus over the 18-month period compared to 296,000 females.

What’s more, black men were at the highest risk with death rates six times higher than that of white men – and much higher than that of black women as well. 

The Brookings Institution analyzed COVID-19 death rates between men and women from the CDC. Pictured: Dr Delkhah Shahin checks on a 34-year-old, unvaccinated, COVID-19 patient at Providence Cedars-Sinai Tarzana Medical Center in Tarzana, California, September 2021

The Brookings Institution analyzed COVID-19 death rates between men and women from the CDC. Pictured: Dr Delkhah Shahin checks on a 34-year-old, unvaccinated, COVID-19 patient at Providence Cedars-Sinai Tarzana Medical Center in Tarzana, California, September 2021

At least 65,000 more men died with 362,000 males dying of the virus between February 2020 and August 2021 compared to 296,000 female deaths

At least 65,000 more men died with 362,000 males dying of the virus between February 2020 and August 2021 compared to 296,000 female deaths

For the analysis, published on Tuesday, the team looked at death data broken down by sex, race and age from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

They found that from February 2020 to August 2021, there were 362,187 male deaths and 296,567 female deaths.

This means at least 65,000 more men have died than women or the death rate for men is 1.6 times higher than the rate for women.

The gap was largest in late January 2021, when the U.S. was in the throes of its third and deadliest wave of the pandemic.

At the time, about 20 per 100,000 women were dying from COVID-19. By comparison, about 35 per 100,000 men were dying from the virus.

Researchers found that the sex gap was widest for middle-aged adults compared to younger and older adults.

Among adults aged 45 to 64, there were 79,711 male deaths, about twice the number of female deaths at 45,587.

What’s more, when calculating the death rate ratio, the researchers found men had higher rates in general, 163 deaths for men for every 100 deaths for women, and across every age group.

The highest ratio was among those aged 45 to 64 with 184 deaths for men for every 100 deaths for women.

There are also race and ethnicity gaps with black men having much higher Covid death rates than not just white people, but black women. 

Researchers analyzed a Harvard study, published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, looking at COVID-19 mortality data through September 21, 2020, from Georgia and Michigan.

Results showed that the overall death rate was 39.1 per 100,000 for white men, 29.7 per 100,000 for white women, 254.6 per 100,000 for black men and 147.1 per 100,000 for black women. 

The highest death ratio was among those aged 45 to 64 with 184 deaths for men for every 100 deaths for women.

The highest death ratio was among those aged 45 to 64 with 184 deaths for men for every 100 deaths for women.

Black men had Covid mortality rates six times higher than white man and higher than the next most vulnerable group: black womem

Black men had Covid mortality rates six times higher than white man and higher than the next most vulnerable group: black womem

Researchers first looked at differences in death rates among the same race groups across different ages.

They found that, in both states, white men and black men were more likely to die from COVID-19 compared to white women and black women, respectively.

In Georgia, for example, the mortality rates were 53.2 per 100,000 for white men, 38.2 per 100,000 for white women, 128.5 per 100,000 for black men and 84.1 per 100,000 for black women. 

This reveals that black men have Covid mortality rates six times higher than white man and higher than the next most vulnerable group: black women. 

 The researchers say they are not sure why men are dying at higher rates than women and say the numbers cannot be explained by a higher number of cases in men or a higher prevalence of pre-existing conditions.  

‘With the pandemic cutting life expectancy of American men by more than two years, it is important to understand and mitigate risks associated with COVID-19 mortality among men,’ the authors wrote.

They say that address vaccine hesitancy and improving access to the shots, especially among black men, should be a top priority for health officials.  

‘In addition to improving access for underserved communities, we need additional research on the interventions that can effectively address hesitancy and increase demand for vaccine uptake,’ they wrote.  

‘Especially with the spread of the new Delta variant, improving access and addressing vaccine hesitancy among the most vulnerable groups – including men, and especially black men – must be a high priority for policymakers.’



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