‘I’ve lost 4 people in my life:’ 61 of 99 COVID-19 deaths in Milwaukee Co. were African American patients

Data pix.

MILWAUKEE -- From radio host Reggie Brown, to State Rep. David Bowen, in Milwaukee, the African American community has been hit hardest by the coronavirus.

Milwaukee County's coronavirus dashboard showed Wednesday, April 15 of the 99 deaths in the county, 61 of the patients were African American. Of the 1,937 positive cases in the county, 827 patients are African American.

"A lot of people are getting it," said Brown. "Already, I've lost four people in my life."

Rep. David Bowen

Rep. David Bowen

"I'm healed -- healed in the name of Jesus," said Bowen. "I'm good."

Milwaukee County health officials are focused on slowing the spread in communities of color, and sharing facts.

"These are individuals that are suffering from this at a greater rate than other people," said Supreme Moore Omokunde, Milwaukee County supervisor.

"Where are you getting information?" said Jeanette Kowalik, Milwaukee health commissioner. "It shouldn't be that you're getting information from someone not in health care science."

Dr. Tito Izard

Dr. Tito Izard

"African Americans are experiencing the effects of COVID-19  mainly due to our longstanding history of having health disparities such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, respiratory issues like asthma," said Dr. Tito Izard with Milwaukee Health Services.

Izard, not shocked by the data, said he's doing what he can to save lives.

"Whenever you take what we refer to as health disparities, you mix that with our economic condition, and now, you just set up for a disaster," said Izard.

So what can other communities take away from what's happening in Milwaukee?

"Understanding that when black people are having these consequences in these communities, that it is something you should see as happening in your community, as well," said Moore.

Coronavirus deaths in Milwaukee County

Coronavirus deaths in Milwaukee County

Coronavirus cases in Milwaukee County

Coronavirus cases in Milwaukee County

Coronavirus cases in Milwaukee County

Coronavirus cases in Milwaukee County

African American leaders noted the coronavirus could also lead to an even greater economic divide.

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