Vishal P. Singh
COVID-19 cases rising in LA, mortality rates highest for BIPOC & low income folks
LOS ANGELES — For the third day in a row, new positive COVID-19 cases in Los Angeles County (plus Pasadena and Long Beach) are over 1,000 (per day). Fortunately, the death rates are not nearly as high as they were during the height of the pandemic, thanks to the vaccines. However, with restrictions lifting across the county, there is bound to be an increase in cases as more people try to return to their normal lives.
The good news is that, with the help of the vaccines, averages for deaths are down, though there is a relative small rise that has occurred in recent days.
However, if deaths start to rise again, they will continue to disproportionally affect Black, Brown, and indigenous people of color, as well as those struggling with poverty. This trend has been consistent, and this disparity has not changed at all for the duration of the pandemic.
According to the most recent numbers from the Los Angeles County Public Health department:
Black people are almost twice as likely to die from COVID-19 than white people.
Brown people are three times as likely to die from COVID-19 than white people.
Poor people are up to 3.2 times as likely to die from COVID-19 than wealthy people.
These ratios have stayed consistent for all of 2021. There has been an ongoing consensus in the United States that these racial and economic disparities in health, which can be seen throughout the medical infrastructure of the nation, are the result of a slow moving class and ethnic cleansing. Whether or not that's intended, it's the current result of our healthcare system.
It's worth remembering that on July 4, 2020, a top Trump official stated in an internal memo: “we want them infected.”
Then Health and Human Services Science Advisor for the Trump Administration, Paul Alexander, stated:
“Infants, kids, teens, young people, young adults, middle aged with no conditions etc. have zero to little risk….so we use them to develop herd… we want them infected…”
If this country ISN’T trying to weaponize the COVID-19 response in order to inflict higher death rates upon minorities and people living in poverty, it’s certainly an interesting coincidence that this outcome just happens to be the actual impact their response seems to have.