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In Chicago, 70% of COVID-19 Deaths Are Black

Sunday, April 05, 2020
WBEZ News
by María Inés Zamudio, Elliott Ramos

In Chicago, 70% of COVID-19 Deaths Are Black

María Inés Zamudio, Elliott Ramos
Patricia Frieson
Courtesy of the family of Patricia Frieson
Patricia Frieson (seated on the right) celebrates her 60th birthday in 2018. Frieson, the first person to die from COVID-19 in Illinois, is remembered for her positive energy, singing, spirituality and strength.

The COVID-19 virus is killing black residents in Cook County at disproportionately high rates, according to early data analyzed by WBEZ.

While black residents make up only 23% of the population in the county, they account for 58% of the COVID-19 deaths. And half of the deceased lived in Chicago, according to data from the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office.

Deaths from COVID-19 in Chicago

Records include deaths in Chicago and neighboring suburbs of Cook County.

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