The covid pandemic has transformed how we think about our health. Most of us instinctively knew that immune defenses could vary dramatically between people. Cue to your uncle Jerry, for instance, who is the kind of person who always catches a cold when he goes out, even in the middle of summer. Then, in comparison, your best friend Chneynelle, who has never been sick since you’ve met in high school, seems like Wonder Woman.
With Covid-19, these disparities could mean that someone would recover without even realizing they were infected, while someone else may require a ventilator. Pre-existing health conditions are also said to increase your risks during the pandemic. Unfortunately, immunologic inequality can play a significant role in your survival potential. However, you may not realize how much social and economic inequalities can affect your life under covid.
Wealth makes a difference
Unfortunately, the pandemic has affected professional careers, forcing individuals who couldn’t work safely from home out of employment. As such, money matters have been at the heart of covid survival for many households. Financial uncertainty and unemployment have encouraged a frugal approach. Yet it is fair to say that wealthy households have a better fighting chance. Surviving covid can come at a high cost: A hospital bed and a ventilator, unfortunately, don’t come for free. Not every household can pay for covid healthcare.
Some essential jobs have high exposure to the virus
Work sectors that could relocate virtually have embraced home-based offices during the pandemic. Yet, not all jobs are suitable for remote working arrangements. Many essential roles have had to carry on, despite physical interactions and contagions risks. Legal teams are now looking into the dramatic increase in Coronavirus deaths in prison environments where guards had no way to self-distance or access to effective protective personal equipment. The dilemma for some professions would have been a matter of life and death over money. Work to survive yet get exposed to the virus, or lose your job and income to protect your health.
Is COVID predominantly racist?
The virus has been disproportionately affecting the BAME population – Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic. Health disparities can explain the alarming figures. Yet, those health disparities are the result of pre-existing inequalities. BAME communities are more likely to struggle with diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and respiratory illnesses, making them more vulnerable to the virus. However, these conditions are often linked to discriminations that drive deprivation, poor living conditions in packed communities, lower occupations, and poverty.
What about LGBT communities?
Are LGBTQ+ communities more dramatically affected by covid? It is a question that concerns discrimination in all areas of their lives, impacting their professional stability, healthcare access, and overall health conditions. Thankfully, a lot of states and countries have been working hard to establish LGBTQ+ laws that protect members of the communities. However, not every area has been able to meet the standards of healthcare. According to a global survey, a significant portion of the LGBTQ+ population has not been able to secure access to essential medications, such as HIV prevention or management, during covid, for instance.
Can we claim that in an equal society, the pandemic wouldn’t be as devastating as it’s been so far? It’s hard to tell. Some Immunologic disparities are linked to genetics and lifestyle choices. However, socio-economic inequalities and discrimination against BAME and LGBTQ+ communities make the pandemic survival more difficult.