COVID Is Killing More Seniors, but It Is Infecting More Young People

Alabama Department of Public Health

Older people account for the vast majority of COVID-19 deaths in Alabama, although they represent fewer than one in five cases of the disease, according to reports this week by the state Department of Public Health.

Individuals who are 65 and older represented 16.8% of the coronavirus cases in the state but 78.4% of the deaths since the pandemic began in March 2020, ADPH said in a report Wednesday.

Those from 25 to 49 years old accounted for 37.6% of the cases but only 4.4% of the deaths, while individuals from 50 to 64 years old made up 21.5% of the cases and 17% of the deaths.

Other demographic breakdowns showed that:

  • By race, whites made up 41.3% of the cases and 59.3% of deaths; Blacks accounted for 21.4% of cases and 28.2% of deaths. The racial identity was unknown for more than a quarter of the cases and almost 10% of deaths.
  • By gender, 54% of cases and 46.3% of deaths were in females; 44.4% of cases and 53.5% of deaths were in males; the rest were of unknown gender.
  • Of the 10,879 deaths reported through Wednesday, only 239 involved individuals who had no underlying health conditions. The figures showed 27.8% of those who died had multiple underlying conditions; 30.7% had cardiovascular disease, 20.3%, diabetes; 12.2%, chronic lung disease; 11.1%, chronic renal disease; 7.7%, immunocompromised condition; 4.1%, obesity; and 1.9%, chronic liver disease.

New Case Averages Down Over Past Week

The number of new cases of COVID-19 has trended downward over the past week, with the daily average dropping from 391 on April 22 to 352 on Thursday. A month ago, on March 29, the average per day stood at 406.

Alabama Department of Public Health

There were 430 new cases in Thursday’s report, bringing the total for the pandemic to 527,513.

The hospitalization rate also has improved, both statewide and at UAB. There were 307 people being treated for the coronavirus at Alabama hospitals Thursday, down from 370 a week earlier and from the high of 3,084 on Jan. 11. At UAB, the number of COVID patients has fallen from a high of 285 on Jan. 3 to 54 on Wednesday.

ADPH reported that 1.47 million Alabamians have received at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine, and 1.07 million have completed the vaccination process.