(CNN)There have been numerous reports of black Americans dying from Covid-19 in disproportionate numbers. CNN's Chief Medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta breaks down the various factors and demographics that may make some people and communities more susceptible.
Race and Risk: Dr. Sanjay Gupta's coronavirus podcast for April 9
You can listen on your favorite podcast app or read the transcript below.
Gupta: Recently we've seen disturbing reports of black Americans dying from the novel coronavirus at a disproportionate rate.
You may remember I told you that a virus doesn't discriminate. And that is still true.
But there are other factors that play a part into how susceptible certain communities are to the virus. Today I'll talk you through some of them.
I'm Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN's Chief Medical Correspondent. And this is "Coronavirus, Fact vs. Fiction."
Dr. Jerome Adams, US Surgeon General (on "CBS This Morning"): Blacks are more likely to have diabetes, heart disease, lung disease and I shared myself personally that I have high blood pressure, that I have heart disease and I and many black Americans are at higher risk for Covid.
Gupta: That's the US Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams talking to CBS.
On Tuesday, he sounded the alarm about the racial disparity in deaths as a result of Covid-19 -- and how underlying health issues play into it.
The federal government has not yet tracked coronavirus by demographic groups, but what we are seeing from some states is pretty shocking.
In Michigan, where I grew up, 14% of the population is black, yet they make up 41% of coronavirus deaths.
In Illinois, 15% identify as black or African American, but they make up 43% of deaths.
A similar pattern is emerging in Louisiana.
CNN Political Commentator Van Jones: The African American community is about to get decimated by this virus and it's time for start talking about it in those terms.
Gupta: That's criminal justice reform advocate and CNN commentator Van Jones.
He outlined some of the other issues that make black America more vulnerable, starting with the fact that they are disproportionately low-income.
Jones: The thing about being poor is it's hard to get away from people. Rich people are already socially isolated. They got gated communities. They got mansions. Part of being poor is you've got a bunch of people around you you can't get away from.
This virus actually is ultra-lethal for black communities because it is an epidemic jumping on top of other epidemics. So, you already have an epidemic of hypertension, high blood pressure in the black community. All the doctors are saying: people who have high blood pressure and hypertension are very at risk to dying when they get this virus. Nobody is saying that