Ethnicity and clinical outcomes in COVID-19: A systematic review and meta-analysisBackground: Patients from ethnic minority groups are disproportionately affected by Coronavirus disease (COVID-19). We performed a systematic review and meta-analysis to explore the relationship between ethnicity and clinical outcomes in COVID-19. Methods: Databases (MEDLINE, EMBASE, PROSPERO, Cochrane library and MedRxiv) were searched up to 31st August 2020, for studies reporting COVID-19 data disaggregated by ethnicity. Outcomes were: risk of infection; intensive therapy unit (ITU) admission and death. PROSPERO ID: 180654. Findings: 18,728,893 patients from 50 studies were included; 26 were peer-reviewed; 42 were from the United States of America and 8 from the United Kingdom. Individuals from Black and Asian ethnicities had a higher risk of COVID-19 infection compared to White individuals. This was consistent in both the main analysis (pooled adjusted RR for Black: 2.02, 95% CI 1.67-2.44; pooled adjusted RR for Asian: 1.50, 95% CI 1.24-1.83) and sensitivity analyses examining peer-reviewed studies only (pooled adjusted RR for Black: 1.85, 95%CI: 1.46-2.35; pooled adjusted RR for Asian: 1.51, 95% CI 1.22-1.88). Individuals of Asian ethnicity may also be at higher risk of ITU admission (pooled adjusted RR 1.97 95% CI 1.34-2.89) (but no studies had yet been peer-reviewed) and death (pooled adjusted RR/HR 1.22 [0.99-1.50]). Interpretation: Individuals of Black and Asian ethnicity are at increased risk of COVID-19 infection compared to White individuals; Asians may be at higher risk of ITU admission and death. These findings are of critical public health importance in informing interventions to reduce morbidity and mortality amongst ethnic minority groups.
The impact of ethnicity on clinical outcomes in COVID-19: A systematic reviewBackground: The relationship between ethnicity and COVID-19 is uncertain. We performed a systematic review to assess whether ethnicity has been reported in patients with COVID-19 and its relation to clinical outcomes. Methods: We searched EMBASE, MEDLINE, Cochrane Library and PROSPERO for English-language citations on ethnicity and COVID-19 (1st December 2019-15th May 2020). We also reviewed: COVID-19 articles in NEJM, Lancet, BMJ, JAMA, clinical trial protocols, grey literature, surveillance data and preprint articles on COVID-19 in MedRxiv to evaluate if the association between ethnicity and clinical outcomes were reported and what they showed. PROSPERO:180654. Findings: Of 207 articles in the database search, five reported ethnicity; two reported no association between ethnicity and mortality. Of 690 articles identified from medical journals, 12 reported ethnicity; three reported no association between ethnicity and mortality. Of 209 preprints, 34 reported ethnicity - 13 found Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) individuals had an increased risk of infection with SARS-CoV-2 and 12 reported worse clinical outcomes, including ITU admission and mortality, in BAME patients compared to White patients. Of 12 grey literature reports, seven with original data reported poorer clinical outcomes in BAME groups compared to White groups. Interpretation: Data on ethnicity in patients with COVID-19 in the published medical literature remains limited. However, emerging data from the grey literature and preprint articles suggest BAME individuals are at an increased risk of acquiring SARS-CoV-2 infection compared to White individuals and also worse clinical outcomes from COVID-19. Further work on the role of ethnicity in the current pandemic is of urgent public health importance.