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African American communities are being hit the hardest by COVID-19

Louisiana

SHREVEPORT, La (KTAL/KMSS) – African-Americans comprise more than 70-percent of coronavirus deaths in Louisiana and Mayor Perkins says it’s about the same for Caddo Parish.

State health experts say one of the underlying conditions putting people at risk of coronavirus complications is hypertension.

“Disturbingly, this information is going to show you that slightly more than 70 percent of all the deaths in Louisiana are of African Americans,” said Gov. John Bel Edwards of Louisiana.

Governor john bel edwards explained this in his monday briefing.

And Shreveport Mayor Adrian Perkins spoke on this in his briefing wednesday afternoon.

“It’s about the exact same here in Caddo Parish,” said Mayor Adrian Perkins of City of Shreveport.

According to the Caddo parish coroner office the death toll in caddo parish is 26 with 19 being african american’s.

State officials say the leading underlying condition in the deaths is hypertension.

“And so that deserves more attention. And we’re going to have to dig into that and see what we can do to slow that trend down,” said Gov. John Bel Edwards.

And hypertension is best known as high blood pressure, just one of the chronic disease that kills african american’s.

“Hypertension, diabetes, obesity, are some of the leading cronic diseases in the African American community,” said Willie White, Chief Executive Officer of David Raines.

Willie White the C,E.O with the david raines community health centers, say chronic diseases in African American’s is what they mostly treat out of their 16,000 paitents across four parishes.

“A large percentage of our patients suffer with those diseases many times they suffer with one or more of those diseases,” said White.

He says African Americans suffer disporportionally with chronic diseases.

White says COVID-19 revealed the disparities in the healcare system for minorities like african american’s.

“Access to care, economic conditions certainly a contributor, lack of health insurance can be a contributing factor,” said White.

And how poverty plays an underlining issue.

“If you’re living in poverty, very often you don’t have access to adequate healthcare service,” said White.

Even though hypertension is an underlining issue with covid-19 deaths in African Americans.

Anyone can still be diagnosed with covid-19.

“I want everyone to hear me when I say this, this virus does not care about race or gender, or where you live, no one is immuned to it,” Mayor Perkis said.

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