A damning report by lawmakers has slammed the “unacceptably high” death rate among people from black, Asian and minority ethnic communities during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Serious errors and delays, including testing, care homes and the timing of the first lockdown, have cost lives during the virus outbreak, said the study by the cross-party Science and Technology Committee and Health and Social Care Committee.
Lawmakers said the pandemic has exacerbated existing social, economic and health inequalities among ethnic minority communities.
Furthermore, the study, which assesses the government’s initial response to the pandemic, found that the higher incidence of COVID among minorities in these groups resulted in higher “rather-or simultaneously-higher comorbidities” of the virus associated with poorer outcomes. may result from exposure. Viruses, including heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes.
In fact, Professor Ian Bell – deputy national statistician at the Office of National Statistics (ONS) – pointed out in the investigation that once socio-economic factors such as disadvantage were included in his model, pre-existing health conditions “explained much.” did not
The report further concluded that Britain’s preparedness for the pandemic was too focused on the flu and that both scientists and ministers waited too long to move through lockdown measures in early 2020 that would have saved lives.
In May 2020, an analysis by The Health Foundation found that after adjusting for age, people of black ethnicity had a four times higher risk of death related to COVID-19 than those of white ethnicity.
The most recently updated figures show that, in England, the rate of these deaths among men of black African ethnic background was 3.7 times higher than among men of white ethnicity, while the rate was 2.6 times higher among women.
People from Bangladeshi, Black Caribbean or Pakistani ethnic backgrounds had higher rates of deaths related to COVID-19.
The written evidence from the investigation was also critical to the government’s efforts to engage and communicate with people from minority ethnic groups.
It comes after several experts and equality groups accused the government of failing to protect high-risk ethnic minority groups during the pandemic, while parts of these communities continue to be hesitant about the vaccine.
“It is almost a quadruple hit – minority ethnic communities are more exasperated because of their circumstances, less protected because their fears and concerns are not being addressed as strongly as their fears and concerns are not addressed, So we’ve got high infection rates and some mitigation,” said Dr Zubeida Haque, a member of the Granthshala SAGE. Granthshala.
In June 2020, Equality and Human Rights Commission started investigation In the effects of the coronavirus on ethnic minorities.
Going forward, the investigation recommends that the government “ensure that its ‘flatten’ agenda includes specific policies to reduce health inequalities, with a particular focus on ensuring that blacks, Asians and minorities Certain groups, including people from ethnic backgrounds, do not continue to face unequal health outcomes”.
NHS staff from black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds “should be included in emergency planning and decision-making structures”, MPs said, adding that there is evidence of how these health practitioners have been affected by COVID-19.
“Workers from black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds are critical to the NHS and care sectors, making up a fifth of the workforce and it is noteworthy that the first ten NHS workers to die from COVID-19 were black, Asian and black. minority ethnic background,” the report read.
In a joint statement, Tory MPs Greg Clark and Jeremy Hunt, who chair the committees, said: “The UK response has combined some big achievements with some big mistakes. It is important to learn from both to ensure that we do as well as possible for the remainder of the pandemic and into the future.
“Our vaccine program was boldly planned and executed effectively. It took a long time for our test and trace program to take effect.
“The government took scientific advice seriously, but the UK initial consensus should have been a challenge above all, delaying more widespread lockdowns when countries like South Korea showed a different approach.
“In response to an emergency, when so much is unknown, it is impossible to fix everything.
“We express our gratitude to all – NHS and care workers, scientists, national and local government officials, those working in our public services and private businesses and the millions of volunteers – who have taken up the challenge with dedication, compassion and hard work. Responded. Help the entire nation in our worst times.”
Credit: www.independent.co.uk /