PHOENIX - A disturbing trend is emerging during the COVID-19 pandemic, with the virus hitting minority groups the hardest.
Recently, an Associated Press analysis based on data through April 8 found that black Americans are disproportionately being affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The analysis found that of the 3,300 COVID-19 victims whose demographic data was publicly shared by officials, about 42% were black. Black people account for roughly 21% of the total population in the areas covered by the analysis. At the time, there had been 13,000 deaths in the nation.
On Wednesday, the CDC released racial data for hospitalizations in 14 states in March that showed that one-third of patients were black. In the United States, black people make up about 13% of the total population.
"Our data suggests they are susceptible to more severe diseases and poorer outcomes," said Dr. Deborah Birx with the Coronavirus Task Force.
In Arizona, the Navajo Nation is under a strict lockdown, with 20 deaths so far despite a relatively low population.
Many minority adults suffer higher rates of obesity diabetes and asthma, making them more susceptible and more likely to be uninsured.
Valley woman describes COVID-19 ordeal
"I woke up gasping for air," said Phoenix resident Parris Wallace, who survived COVID-19.
Even as a healthy woman in her mid-30s, it took Wallace all of her strength to do it.
“I feel like I got punched in the chest, and the fist just stayed there," said Wallace.
"I got through it by relying on the community members even strangers. Some people I didn’t even know," said Wallace.
Wallace, who works for a non-profit, is not surprised by the numbers or the narrative.
"It feels shameful," said Wallace.
The Associated Press (AP) contributed to this report.
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