Age as a Risk Factor for COVID-19 Infection Among Self-Identifying Latinx Adults Open Access

Milan, Daniel (Spring 2021)

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Objectives: This study aims to explore the effects and association of age and gender and those who test positive for COVID-19 in a sample of self-identifying Latinx adults within Georgia. 

Methods: We conducted a case-control study analysis evaluating the association between age and gender and positive COVID-19 test in a sample of Latinx individuals who were tested for COVID-19 between April 2020 and February 2021. Ethnicity was self-reported, age was categorized into four groups, 18-29, 30-39, 40-49, and 50+ years, and gender was categorized as either male or female. Logistic regression was used to estimate associations between each age category and a positive COVID-19 test result using age of 50+ years as the reference category while adjusting for gender. 

Results: Of the included 922 Latinx adults eligible for analysis, 117 (12.7%) had a positive COVID-19 test. The population was 55% female (n=510) and the mean age was 38 years (standard deviation of 12.6). Younger people had a higher likelihood of a positive COVID-19 infection compared to the reference category of 50+ years After controlling for gender, Latinx adults between the ages of 18-29 years were more than two times as likely to have a positive COVID-19 test than those age 50+ years (aOR: 2.38, 95% CI: 1.22-4.67). This difference was larger for those age 40-49 years (aOR: 2.55, 95% CI: 1.28-5.08). Those age 30-39 years were two times more likely to have a positive COVID-19 test, but this increased risk was not statistically significant (aOR: 1.99 95% CI: 0.99-4.04). 

Discussion: Our findings that younger age groups were at an increased risk for COVID-19 does not align with previous aggregated data across all US populations and analyses of aggregated minority populations. Differences seen in Latinx populations within state level data are missed in national data and might be due to either incomplete data or various underlying risk factors not fully considered. Disparities found within subpopulations at local levels that are created by systems of health inequities allows public health agencies to collaborate with grassroots organizations in preventative communication and allocating resources to those most vulnerable. 

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