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Study Finds American Indian, Alaska Native Patients Had Higher COVID-19 Hospital Mortality Rates Than Black or White Patients

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A new study found that American Indian and Alaska Native patients had lower comorbidity risk scores than those observed among Black or White patients.

The study – In-Hospital Mortality Disparities Among American Indian and Alaska Native, Black, and White Patients With COVID-19 – published in JAMA Network Open, sought to evaluate whether racial mortality differences among adults hospitalized with COVID-19 are associated with differential comorbidity experiences.

Retrospective hospital discharge data from the Mississippi Inpatient Outpatient Data System was used for the study. All adult (aged ≥18 years) Mississippians of a known racial identity and who had been hospitalized with COVID-19 from March 1 to December 31, 2020, in any of the state’s 103 nonfederal hospitals were included. Data were abstracted on June 17, 2021.
A total of 18,731 adults hospitalized with a COVID-19 diagnosis and known racial identity were included.

The study found American Indian and Alaska Native patients were significantly more likely to die in the hospital of COVID-19 than Black or White patients at every level of comorbidity risk.

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