October 26, 2022

Variation in treatment, outcomes by race of veterans hospitalized with COVID-19

By: Judy Mathias

Editor's Note

This study led by the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine finds that Black veterans hospitalized with COVID-19 were less likely to be treated with evidence-based treatments than White patients.

A total of 43,222 veterans (12,135 Black and 31,087 White) hospitalized with COVID-19 in 130 Veterans Affairs Medical Centers were analyzed.

Among the findings:

  • Blacks were equally likely to be admitted to ICU as Whites (39.6% vs 43.2%).
  • Blacks were less likely to receive steroids than Whites within hospitals (Odds ratio [OR] 0.88) and between hospitals (OR 0.67).
  • Blacks were less likely to receive remdesivir than Whites within hospitals (OR 0.89) and between hospitals (OR 0.68).
  • Blacks were less likely to receive immunomodulatory drugs than Whites within hospitals (OR 0.77).
  • After adjustments, there was no association of Blacks with within hospital mortality (OR 0.98) or 30-day readmissions (OR 0.95).

Though differences in care were partially explained by within- and between-hospital differences, the findings underscore the need for a comprehensive approach to minimize racial variation in COVID-19 care, the researchers say.

JAMA (healthcare publication) Network logo


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