DHS releases race, ethnicity statistics on COVID-19 patients

Covid 19 demographics graph

MADISON, Wis. — Officials with the Wisconsin Department of Health Services have updated the department’s COVID-19 website with information about patients’ race and ethnicity.

Data on DHS’ outbreak page breaks down the number and percentages of confirmed cases by race and ethnicity. The site also includes information on hospitalizations and more detailed demographics for the patients who have been diagnosed with the coronavirus.

The new statistics show that, black Wisconsinites make up 26.9% of total confirmed cases in the state despite only accounting for 6.7% of the state’s population, according to a 2019 estimate from the Census Bureau. The numbers also show that African Americans account for 42.4% of COVID-19-related deaths in Wisconsin.

The numbers are likely due to Milwaukee County being the hardest hit in the state both in terms of confirmed cases and deaths. Milwaukee has a black population of nearly 40%, according to an Associated Press report.

DHS released the new statistics shortly after confirming Wisconsin now has more than 2,700 confirmed cases of the coronavirus.