Who’s Most Vulnerable to the Coronavirus?

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Researchers from the Center for Public Integrity partnered with NPR to explore which populations are most vulnerable to the coronavirus, based on the most recent COVID-19 data from the CDC and other health research organizations. Age, underlying conditions, ethnicity and socioeconomic status may all increase the risk of infection. The research shows that the elderly account for 80 percent of fatal cases of coronavirus in both the United States and China so far. In addition, more than three quarters of COVID-19 patients treated in the ICU suffered from underlying conditions, especially those with heart disease, diabetes, and chronic lung disease. Because African Americans are more likely to suffer from heart related conditions, researchers are concerned that this may also increase the vulnerability of this population. Individuals living in poverty are also at particularly high risk as they often face limited access to healthcare or other necessary resources and are also more likely to suffer from underlying conditions.

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