The Unnecessary Deaths Among Black People from Covid-19 in Western World

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Looking at the invisible to the naked eyes but fragile coronavirus Covid-19 which brought the world into a lockdown partially or in total once again reminds us of our human limitation irrespective of who we are. Whether the virus was evolutional or inorganic, nevertheless, the answer to it is in our hands. If there was a time to reassess the most important and priority sector in society, this could be the right time. The neglected stone; public health sector, which had been starved of fund, facilities and personnel by many countries in pursuit of private riches in unnecessary privatisations; has become the corner stone at the hour of actual need. The staff of the sector; medical doctors, nurses, scientists and others that were virtually into oblivion and poorly paid suddenly became celebrities, and toast of every society. 

As it is now evident from Covid-19 pandemic that private medicine dominance over public health sector is not the way forward in adequate healthcare provision and full cover for society; public health sector should be accorded a priority sector in every country. The United Kingdom (UK) system, the National Health Service (NHS), should be followed by every country of the world. The British system is where you obtain health service at the time of your need without having to worry about the money in your pocket at the point of delivery; you walk in, get the health service you need and walk out. 

But the British NHS should not be judged by the abnormally high total number of deaths from coronavirus Covid-19 in the country, which were, as at 19 May 2020, a total of 35,000, the second largest in the world. If it was not the already well-established NHS in the country things could have been worse. The abnormally high deaths from the pandemic were primarily due to the poor handling and management by the Government. The classic class society of the British was at play. The Government ignored the best strategy, to handle the pandemic, which was floated by a group of experts who are outside the establishment of society. Instead, the Government chose the strategy that was devised by the experts who are among the establishment of society. Their strategy turned out to be wrong and the country paid the price of heavy deaths for such Government wrong choice.

The total number of deaths from Covid-19 virus in the United States of America (USA), as at 19 May 2020, were 92,000, the largest in the world. The very high deaths were generally  as a result of inadequate, poor and virtually non-existent public healthcare system, and the dominant private medicine in the country. Had the US a dominant and well-established public healthcare system as the UK; with her far better management, the US could have recorded very few deaths.

However, the unprecedented, abnormal and high number of deaths among black people from coronavirus Covid-19 in individual western countries, particularly in the US and UK, amid their supposed advanced medicine and healthcare system, is alarming. Although black people composed of very small population in each of the rest of the western countries yet the rates of their deaths in these countries are relatively very high. The very high number of black people’s deaths can neither be construed as by fate nor by accident.

There are reasons that can be adduced to the abnormally high rate of the deaths. From history and precedents; there are actual reasons which are actually responsible which cannot be dismissed even with conspiracy theory. Within the actual reasons, there are attributable risks and contributory factors but which are not enough to have tipped the number of the deaths among black people to such abnormally high rates, which are not proportionate to their rate of population in each of the western countries.

Contracting coronavirus Covid-19 by anybody is one thing and dying from it is another. The key question here is; why are black people more likely to die easily from the virus infection in only western countries amid their advanced medicine and healthcare system?  In its analysis, at the time of writing, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) of the UK stated that on contracting the virus and then fell ill from it;

-White people are 30% likely to die from the disease,

-Asians are 40% – 60% likely to die from it,

-Black people are 90% likely to die from it.

These are irrespective of ages, good health or underlying health conditions. Coincidentally the rate for black people is almost the same as in the US if it is not worse in that country.

If ONS arrived at this conclusion from the number of deaths from the beginning of the pandemic and as well extrapolated it as likely future occurrence; must black people die from Covid-19 infection at the rate of 90% of them who contracted the virus? Looking at the analysis which can now be interpreted also as a projection of future rate of deaths among black people; was the extrapolation meant to eliminate suspicion of any anomality as the rate is constant or increase in future? This could be very much justifying any anticipatory actions. History has it in the US, during slave ownership era by the white and pandemic; many black people were either left to die untreated or used to experiment for new drugs’ efficacy which killed them.

Some of the attributable risks and contributory factors that make black people to be susceptible to contracting Covid-19 virus easily in western countries are; on the risk factors; 

-Many black people are found to doing poorly and low paid jobs.

-In many of these jobs, they are always in contact with the general public.

-Many black people are found in the health sector.

-They have direct contact with patients in the hospitals and care homes in their duties as medical doctors, nurses, etc.

-They are more likely to be assigned to duties with or without adequate protective equipment.

-These are irrespective of poor housing of many black families.

All these cannot be the fault of the black people who found themselves in these ‘hazardous occupations’ and then contracting the Covid-19 virus as a result.

Within these, there are contributory factors.

-Some of the black people are in general unlikely to take adequate protection and care of themselves.

-Many of them are more likely not to observe the recommended protection measures against contracting Covid-19 virus.

-Having large family living together under one roof, even in poor accommodation, is not actually the problem if any of them does not carelessly bring the virus from outside.

-The much-touted underlying ill-health are not isolated to black people who fell ill from the virus.

-If black people can protect themselves more especially by strictly following preventive measures, they will not fall ill from the virus and to find themselves in a situation where their lives are no longer in their hands.

But these risks and contributory factors in contracting the virus do not mean black people should die from the virus infection in the western countries at comparatively such very high numbers.

In the western world, majority of white people do not like black people or want to see them in their countries. However, majority of these, because of the stringent racial laws of their countries, do not express their racism, do not want to be seen as racists or breaking their laws. However, a small number of the white, the far right, would openly playout their racism in disregard for their laws. You can see these openly in many European countries and the US but quietly in the UK. But majority of the white will foment their racism if they know they can get away with it. Some of these in positions of power, such as the Police, Judges, Council Officials, etc. use such positions to foment their racial tendency and most of the time they get away with it. Some of these people in positions of power who are in the medical cannot be different.

There are reasons which cannot be dismissed as conspiracy theory as to why abnormal numbers of black people die from coronavirus Covid-19 in the western countries. These are simply by neglect and the use of wrong or experimental drugs, especially at this time when there are no officially known or approved drugs for the cure of Covid-19. When black people are unwell or have symptoms of the disease and they call emergency service for help, they are more likely to be ignored, delayed to attend to, told to self-isolate even if their conditions do not warrant mere self-isolation. They are only to be taken to hospital when their condition deteriorated to the state which survival rate is negligible. At the hospital they are more likely to be ignored, given the wrong drugs or experimental drugs. All of these are motivated by nothing but racism. Today in the UK, many black people are reluctant to call emergency services, report incidents to authorities; Police, Councils, etc. as their calls and reports will be ignored or dismissed politely.

From www.worldometers.info/coronavirus; as at 19 May 2020, the state of Covid-19 cases in Nigeria, South Africa and Ghana were as follow.  

Country

Total Cases

Active Cases

Recovered

Deaths

Deaths/Total

Nigeria

6,175

4,340

1,644

191

3.09%

South Africa

16,433

8,849

7,298

286

1.74%

Ghana

5,918

4,133

1,754

31

0.52%

Looking at the very low percentage rates of death; are they not of the same black race and people in the western countries? If these African patients at home were in the western countries, following ONS assertion, about 90% of them would have died by now. Those at home in Africa in general live in poorer accommodations than their counterparts in the western countries. Those black consultants, senior medical doctors, senior nurses, etc. who died from the virus infection in western countries were not known with some underlying health condition, neither poorly paid nor lived in wretched accommodations. Majority of those Africans who died of the virus in the western countries mainly because of deliberate neglect and racism would have lived if they were at home in their countries in Africa.

World Health Organisation (WHO) predicted that 190,000 people will die from Covid-19 in the first year in the whole of Africa. If this came to pass; it will be as result of inadequate medical facilities to handling the pandemic. It will be individual African countries’ own carelessness, allowing the virus to spread, buying, accepting fake, substandard, defective, expired screening and testing equipment, which will be giving them false negative, and false positive results.

As African countries are learning fast from the successful handling of the pandemic elsewhere, with the small number of deaths they have recorded so far and the high number of recovered cases only with ‘bare hands’ and their known traditional herbal and conventional medicines for the treatment of symptoms of Covid-19 virus, I doubt if WHO’s prediction will even come to pass at a maximum of 20% (38,000) deaths of the predicted number of 190,000.

As at 19 May 2020, in Africa, the state of Covid-19 cases was as follow.   

Continent

Total Cases

Active Cases

Recovered

Deaths

Death/Total

Africa

90,785

52,598

35,318

2,869

3.16%

As the western countries have not seen catastrophic results, very high number of deaths, which they desire to see in African countries and that the continent despite their poorer medical facilities; their deaths rate is very low. They are now predicting catastrophic result of billions of deaths for Africa within a year; in their usual distraction from their own failure at home amid advanced medicine, etc. For these African countries must be vigilant against any foreign saboteurs who are desperate to see that Covid-19 virus or its replacement devastate the continent.

Alfred Aisedionlen  (20 May 2020)

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