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Ethnic differences in COVID-19 mortality during the first two waves of the Coronavirus Pandemic: a nationwide cohort study of 29 million adults in England

Background: Ethnic minorities have experienced disproportionate COVID-19 mortality rates in the UK and many other countries. We compared the differences in the risk of COVID-19 related death between ethnic groups in the first and second waves the of COVID-19 pandemic in England. We also investigated whether the factors explaining differences in COVID-19 death between ethnic groups changed between the two waves.

Methods: Using data from the Office for National Statistics Public Health Data Asset on individuals aged 30-100 years living in private households, we conducted an observational cohort study to examine differences in the risk of death involving COVID-19 between ethnic groups in the first wave (from 24th January 2020 until 31st August 2020) and second wave (from 1st September to 28th December 2020). We estimated age-standardised mortality rates (ASMR) in the two waves stratified by ethnic groups and sex. We also estimated hazard ratios (HRs) for ethnic-minority groups compared with the White British population, adjusted for geographical factors, socio-demographic
characteristics, and pre-pandemic health conditions.

Original content: Health Data Research Innovation Gateway