Disparities in Vulnerability to Severe Complications from COVID-19 in the United States.

Journal Article

This paper provides the first nationally representative estimates of vulnerability to severe complications from COVID-19 overall and across race-ethnicity and socioeconomic status. We use the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID) to examine the prevalence of specific health conditions associated with complications from COVID-19 and to calculate, for each individual, an index of the risk of severe complications from respiratory infections developed by DeCaprio et al. (2020). We show large disparities across race-ethnicity and socioeconomic status in the prevalence of conditions, including hypertension, which are associated with the risk of severe complications from COVID-19. Moreover, we show that these disparities emerge early in life, prior to age 65, leading to higher vulnerability to such complications. Our results suggest particular attention should be paid to the risk of adverse outcomes in midlife for non-Hispanic blacks, adults with a high school degree or less, and low-income Americans.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Wiemers, EE; Abrahams, S; AlFakhri, M; Hotz, VJ; Schoeni, RF; Seltzer, JA

Published Date

  • May 30, 2020

Published In

  • Medrxiv : the Preprint Server for Health Sciences

PubMed ID

  • 32511522

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC7273290

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1101/2020.05.28.20115899


  • eng