Skip to main content

Main Area

Main

Biggest population groups vulnerable to COVID-19 in every state

1/
Pixabay

Biggest population groups vulnerable to COVID-19 in every state

The unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic has put the most vulnerable and marginalized people at the highest risk. This novel coronavirus will surely be the focus of relentless study for much of the foreseeable future, as medical experts and policymakers take a closer look at the most significant factors in its spread and severity.

To paint a clearer picture of those disproportionately affected, Stacker investigated data across dozens of sources to determine exactly which groups of people are most vulnerable in every state. We’ve concluded who is most at risk and contextualized the findings in relation to national averages to show how each situation is unique to its state.

We compiled a list of 26 population groups that are demonstrably either more at risk of contracting the virus due to location or occupational conditions, or more at risk of experiencing a more-severe case due to health risk factors. We then split these groups into three categories: demographic (social and race/ethnicity groups), economic (groups relating to occupation), and epidemiological (groups related to preexisting disease conditions). Conclusions are represented by the top three demographic groups, top three economic groups, and top four epidemiological groups for each state. For additional insight, we’ve included small groups (less than 10% of the national population) for which the state ranks highly compared with the national average.

Among the demographic factors, we found rural states are at high risk, as residents lack accessible, convenient medical care, or as many hospitals have closed in recent decades. Black and Latino communities are suffering in numbers far higher than their share of population. Many who are clustered in low-paying jobs—and those deemed essential—don’t have the safer option of working at home and are thus more exposed to the public and the virus.

Older people face some of the greatest risk of falling severely ill from COVID-19, especially those with weakened immune systems and chronic health conditions. Many live in long-term care facilities, where a tragic combination of proximity, poorly-paid staff, and a dearth of protective gear have turned care centers into death traps. Homeless people have little defense, and thousands of inmates have tested positive in prisons where they cannot practice social isolation to protect themselves.

The full list of groups and data sources that we used can be found in this public spreadsheet, that explores risks to vulnerable populations in each state.

Related: 20 ways COVID-19 is impacting children around the world

2/
Pixabay

Alabama

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 28.8% (1.7% above national average)
- #2. Black or African American: 26.6% (73.3% above national average)
- #3. Seniors (age 65+): 16.1% (3.5% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 17.5% (28.2% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 12.1% (30.2% above national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.1% (15.0% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 41.9% (28.0% above national average)
- #2. Obese: 36.2% (15.6% above national average)
- #3. Smokers: 19.2% (15.7% above national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 14.5% (30.5% above national average)

Other data insights:
- Alabama has the #4 highest rate of major cardiovascular disease (12.1%), 40.3% higher than the national average
- Alabama has the #4 highest rate of chronic lung disease (10.3%), 45.6% higher than the national average

In Alabama, a high poverty rate mixes with the presence of significant cardiovascular disease and other health problems: fertile ground for coronavirus to spread and have a severe impact. Adding to the numbers of people in need, more people filed for unemployment in Alabama in mid-March and April than in the last two years, Gov. Ivey said.

3/
Pixabay

Alaska

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 87.2% (208.5% above national average)
- #2. Native American/Alaska Native: 14.4% (791.3% above national average)
- #3. Disabled: 12.0% (8.9% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Uninsured: 13.8% (49.1% above national average)
- #2. Below poverty level: 10.8% (20.9% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.3% (9.5% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 31.8% (2.9% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 29.5% (5.8% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 19.1% (15.1% above national average)
- #4. Asthma: 9.2% (4.9% below national average)

Other data insights:
- Alaska has the #1 highest Native American/Alaska Native population (14.4%), 791.3% higher than the national average

Alaska has nearly 800% more Native Americans in its population than the average. Native Americans struggle with poverty, poor health, substandard medical care, and cramped housing. The number of homes in Alaska defined as overcrowded is about double the national average, an obstacle to social distancing.

4/
Pixabay

Arizona

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Hispanic/Latino: 31.1% (165.2% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 16.7% (7.3% above national average)
- #3. Disabled: 12.9% (1.7% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 16.1% (17.9% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 11.4% (22.3% above national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.2% (12.1% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 30.7% (6.2% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 29.5% (5.8% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 14.0% (15.6% below national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 10.8% (2.8% below national average)

Other data insights:
- Arizona has the #5 highest incarcerated population (0.6%), 54.9% higher than the national average

Not only is Arizona home to a large Latino population that is susceptible to the spread of COVID-19, but the state has one of the biggest incarcerated populations in the nation. As of early May, several dozen inmates have tested positive, though only a very small portion of the state’s 41,000-plus incarcerated population has been tested.

5/
Pixabay

Arkansas

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 40.8% (44.3% above national average)
- #2. Disabled: 17.2% (30.8% above national average)
- #3. Seniors (age 65+): 16.3% (4.8% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 17.6% (28.9% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 9.5% (2.2% above national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.4% (7.4% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 41.3% (26.1% above national average)
- #2. Obese: 37.1% (18.5% above national average)
- #3. Smokers: 22.7% (36.8% above national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 13.9% (25.1% above national average)

Other data insights:
- Arkansas has the #3 highest rate of major cardiovascular disease (12.6%), 46.1% higher than the national average

With Arkansas’ high prevalence of major heart disease, many residents are at risk of falling very ill to coronavirus. Compounding the danger, more than a third of residents qualify as obese. Obesity is closely linked to diabetes, a major indicator of severe coronavirus cases.

6/
Pixabay

California

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Hispanic/Latino: 38.9% (231.7% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 13.6% (12.6% below national average)
- #3. Disabled: 10.5% (19.6% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 14.3% (4.7% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 8.6% (7.9% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.6% (4.3% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 28.4% (13.3% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 25.8% (17.6% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 11.2% (32.5% below national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 10.4% (6.4% below national average)

Other data insights:
- California has the #2 highest population in multi-generational households (5.9%), 74.7% higher than the national average
- California has the #5 highest homeless population (0.4%), 145.6% higher than the national average

California has been one of the hardest-hit states, and it implemented some of the strictest protocols to help stop the spread. Factors that could be making the state vulnerable have been its high Latino population, its high poverty level, and a homeless population that is 145.6% higher than the national average.

You may also like: States where obesity is increasing the most

7/
Pixabay

Colorado

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Hispanic/Latino: 21.4% (82.5% above national average)
- #2. Rural: 14.5% (48.7% below national average)
- #3. Seniors (age 65+): 13.4% (13.9% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 10.9% (20.2% below national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 8.4% (9.0% below national average)
- #3. Food service workers: 4.7% (8.2% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 25.9% (20.9% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 23.0% (26.5% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 14.5% (12.6% below national average)
- #4. Asthma: 9.1% (5.9% below national average)

The biggest risk factor linked to a potentially severe coronavirus outbreak in Colorado is the size of the state’s Latino population. More than one in five residents is Latino, and they are being disproportionately affected by the virus. Many have low-wage jobs and cannot afford to stop working in the pandemic, or service jobs that put them in contact with the public.

8/
heipei // Wikimedia Commons

Connecticut

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Seniors (age 65+): 16.4% (5.4% above national average)
- #2. Hispanic/Latino: 15.7% (33.9% above national average)
- #3. Disabled: 11.0% (16.3% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 10.0% (26.8% below national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 6.1% (34.4% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 5.1% (7.3% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 30.5% (6.8% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 27.4% (12.5% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 12.2% (26.5% below national average)
- #4. Asthma: 10.3% (6.5% above national average)

Compared with the national average, Connecticut has a high number of health care workers who are at the frontlines risking exposure. The state has had one of the highest death tolls in the country.

9/
Art Anderson // Wikimedia Commons

Delaware

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Black or African American: 22.1% (44.0% above national average)
- #2. Rural: 17.9% (36.5% below national average)
- #3. Seniors (age 65+): 17.6% (13.1% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 11.9% (12.9% below national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 6.3% (32.5% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 5.2% (8.4% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 34.9% (6.6% above national average)
- #2. Obese: 33.5% (7.0% above national average)
- #3. Smokers: 16.5% (0.6% below national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 11.9% (7.1% above national average)

Other data insights:
- Delaware has the #3 highest incarcerated population (0.4%), 15.4% higher than the national average
- Delaware has the #3 highest rate of cancer diagnosis (0.6%), 18.1% higher than the national average

Delaware’s senior population, much larger than the national average, is at heightened risk of contracting severe cases of coronavirus. According to the CDC, immune systems weaken with age, diminishing the ability of older people to battle infections.

 

10/
Pixabay

District of Columbia

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Black or African American: 46.9% (205.6% above national average)
- #2. Housing structures with 10+ units: 46.2% (292.1% above national average)
- #3. Seniors (age 65+): 11.9% (23.5% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 16.8% (23.0% above national average)
- #2. Food service workers: 8.8% (103.2% above national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 7.2% (50.1% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 26.7% (18.4% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 24.7% (21.1% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 13.8% (16.8% below national average)
- #4. Asthma: 11.6% (19.9% above national average)

Other data insights:
- District of Columbia has the #1 highest homeless population (1.0%), 505.6% higher than the national average
- District of Columbia has the #1 highest rate of HIV diagnosis (2.4%), 673.7% higher than the national average

The size of Washington D.C.’s homeless population is the major risk factor for the spread of coronavirus. People who are homeless face a high danger of infection in congregate shelters with shared facilities and little room to practice social isolation or distancing. They also often have chronic health conditions. The District’s homeless population is estimated at about 6,500.

11/
Pixabay

Florida

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Hispanic/Latino: 25.2% (114.9% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 19.7% (26.6% above national average)
- #3. Black or African American: 16.1% (4.9% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 14.8% (8.4% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 14.5% (56.0% above national average)
- #3. Food service workers: 4.6% (6.4% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 34.6% (5.7% above national average)
- #2. Obese: 30.7% (1.9% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 14.5% (12.6% below national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 12.6% (13.4% above national average)

Other data insights:
- Florida has the #4 highest rate of HIV diagnosis (0.6%), 97.5% higher than the national average

A mix of factors add up to higher risks of severe coronavirus cases in Florida—particularly the state’s high number of older residents and a prevalence of diabetes. Also posing a risk is the number of people with HIV diagnoses, nearly twice the national average. People with HIV may have compromised immune systems that would have difficulty fighting off the virus.

You may also like: Best exercises that burn calories

12/
J. Miers // Wikimedia Commons

Georgia

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Black or African American: 31.5% (105.3% above national average)
- #2. Rural: 19.4% (31.3% below national average)
- #3. Seniors (age 65+): 13.1% (15.8% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 16.0% (17.2% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 15.6% (67.9% above national average)
- #3. Food service workers: 4.0% (6.6% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 33.1% (1.1% above national average)
- #2. Obese: 32.5% (3.8% above national average)
- #3. Smokers: 16.1% (3.0% below national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 12.6% (13.4% above national average)

Other data insights:
- Georgia has the #5 highest rate of HIV diagnosis (0.6%), 96.4% higher than the national average

Georgia has a Black population twice as large as the national average, and the African American community is getting hit disproportionately hard by the pandemic. Reasons include the disproportionate number with low-wage jobs that have been deemed essential or customer-facing careers that can’t be performed from home. Georgians also have a host of high-risk health conditions such as obesity, hypertension, and diabetes.

13/
Pixabay

Hawaii

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 24.9% (12.1% below national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 17.3% (11.2% above national average)
- #3. Disabled: 11.2% (14.7% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 9.9% (27.5% below national average)
- #2. Food service workers: 6.0% (38.6% above national average)
- #3. Uninsured: 4.5% (51.3% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 30.6% (6.5% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 24.9% (20.5% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 13.4% (19.2% below national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 11.5% (3.5% above national average)

Other data insights:
- Hawaii has the #1 highest population in multi-generational households (7.9%), 137.0% higher than the national average
- Hawaii has the #3 highest homeless population (0.5%), 186.6% higher than the national average

A homeless population almost 200% higher than the national average is a coronavirus risk for Hawaii. An estimated 6,500 people are homeless in the state, although a surge of newly-homeless people is expected as Hawaiians lose wages and jobs in the economic shutdown.

14/
Pixabay

Idaho

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 36.8% (30.0% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 15.0% (3.6% below national average)
- #3. Disabled: 13.3% (1.3% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 13.8% (1.1% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 13.0% (39.9% above national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.4% (7.0% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 29.8% (9.0% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 28.4% (9.3% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 14.7% (11.4% below national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 10.2% (8.2% below national average)

Because the state is so rural, Idaho residents face added risk of the coronavirus, given access to fewer—and further apart—medical facilities. In the last decade, over 100 rural hospitals have closed across the country.

15/
Pixabay

Illinois

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Hispanic/Latino: 17.0% (45.0% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 14.8% (4.9% below national average)
- #3. Black or African American: 14.2% (7.5% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 13.1% (4.1% below national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 8.1% (12.7% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.5% (6.8% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 32.2% (1.6% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 31.8% (1.6% above national average)
- #3. Smokers: 15.5% (6.6% below national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 10.0% (10.0% below national average)

A risk factor for severe coronavirus cases in Illinois is its rate of obesity, as nearly a third of its residents qualify. According to the CDC, severe obesity increases the chances of acute respiratory distress syndrome, one of the complications of COVID-19. People with severe obesity also tend to have chronic diseases and health conditions linked to severe illness from COVID-19.

16/
Pixabay

Indiana

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 25.8% (8.7% below national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 15.0% (3.6% below national average)
- #3. Disabled: 13.7% (4.6% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 14.1% (3.3% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 8.8% (4.7% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.6% (3.0% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 35.2% (7.5% above national average)
- #2. Obese: 34.1% (8.9% above national average)
- #3. Smokers: 21.1% (27.2% above national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 12.5% (12.5% above national average)

Indiana residents have high rates of hypertension, obesity, and diabetes, and one in five is a smoker. People with pulmonary hypertension are at risk because COVID-19, while targeting the respiratory system, forces the heart to work harder to provide enough oxygen.

You may also like: Worst states for health care

17/
Pixabay

Iowa

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 44.1% (56.1% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 16.4% (5.4% above national average)
- #3. Disabled: 11.6% (11.9% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 11.7% (14.3% below national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 5.4% (41.8% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.6% (2.9% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Obese: 35.3% (12.8% above national average)
- #2. Hypertension: 31.5% (3.8% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 16.6% (0.0% above national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 10.0% (10.0% below national average)

Other data insights:
- Iowa has the #1 highest nursing home population (0.8%), 74.3% higher than the national average

Being home to the highest nursing-home population in the country puts Iowa in the crosshairs of a severe coronavirus outbreak. More than two dozen long-term care facilities across the state have reported outbreaks. Nursing homes have been coronavirus hotspots due to an array of factors including shared rooms, understaffing, and chronic health conditions.

18/
Pixabay

Kansas

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 37.7% (33.3% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 15.1% (2.9% below national average)
- #3. Disabled: 12.9% (1.8% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 12.4% (9.2% below national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 10.1% (8.5% above national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 5.2% (7.8% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Obese: 34.4% (9.9% above national average)
- #2. Hypertension: 32.8% (0.2% above national average)
- #3. Smokers: 17.2% (3.7% above national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 11.6% (4.4% above national average)

A combination of serious health conditions like hypertension, diabetes, and obesity make Kansas residents vulnerable to severe coronavirus cases. The Mayo Clinic says obesity and diabetes reduce the efficiency of the immune system, and diabetes raises the risk of infection.

19/
Pixabay

Kentucky

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 47.2% (67.1% above national average)
- #2. Disabled: 17.3% (32.2% above national average)
- #3. Seniors (age 65+): 15.6% (0.3% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 17.9% (31.1% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 6.3% (32.6% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.4% (8.8% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 39.4% (20.3% above national average)
- #2. Obese: 36.6% (16.9% above national average)
- #3. Smokers: 23.4% (41.0% above national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 13.7% (23.3% above national average)

Other data insights:
- Kentucky has the #2 highest rate of major cardiovascular disease (12.6%), 46.1% higher than the national average
- Kentucky has the #2 highest rate of chronic lung disease (12.1%), 71.1% higher than the national average
- Kentucky has the #2 highest rate of chronic kidney disease (4.2%), 39.8% higher than the national average

Nearly one in five Kentucky residents lives in poverty, more than 30% above the national average. Poverty is strongly linked to the spread of coronavirus, as poorer people are less able to stay home and self-isolate, may have jobs putting them in close contact with others, and may live in crowded housing. Since the outbreak began, 33% of Kentucky’s workers have lost their jobs.

 

20/
Kathleen K. Parker // Shutterstock

Louisiana

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Black or African American: 32.2% (109.8% above national average)
- #2. Rural: 20.5% (27.5% below national average)
- #3. Disabled: 15.0% (14.1% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 19.4% (42.1% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 9.6% (2.9% above national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.7% (1.7% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 39.0% (19.1% above national average)
- #2. Obese: 36.8% (17.6% above national average)
- #3. Smokers: 20.5% (23.6% above national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 14.1% (26.9% above national average)

Other data insights:
- Louisiana has the #1 highest incarcerated population (0.7%), 75.1% higher than the national average
- Louisiana has the #5 highest rate of chronic lung disease (9.9%), 40.0% higher than the national average

Louisiana, which was pummeled early in the nation’s coronavirus outbreak, has a host of contributing factors such as poverty, obesity, and hypertension. It also has the highest incarceration rate in the country, with 50,000 people locked in densely-filled prisons where social distancing is nearly impossible.

21/
Pixabay

Maine

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 52.5% (85.7% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 19.4% (24.7% above national average)
- #3. Disabled: 15.9% (21.2% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 12.5% (8.5% below national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 8.7% (6.7% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 5.9% (22.4% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 34.8% (6.3% above national average)
- #2. Obese: 30.4% (2.9% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 17.8% (7.3% above national average)
- #4. Asthma: 12.3% (27.2% above national average)

Other data insights:
- Maine has the #1 highest rate of cancer diagnosis (0.6%), 24.6% higher than the national average

Because the state leads the country in cancer diagnoses, Maine residents are susceptible to severe incidence of coronavirus. Some types of cancers and cancer treatments weaken the body’s immune system, putting patients at heightened danger of infection.

You may also like: From single cells to fully grown adults: human development in 20 steps

22/
Vicki_Smith // Shutterstock

Maryland

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Black or African American: 29.8% (94.2% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 14.6% (6.2% below national average)
- #3. Disabled: 10.9% (17.0% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 9.4% (31.2% below national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 6.9% (26.2% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.4% (7.0% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 32.4% (1.0% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 30.9% (1.3% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 12.5% (24.7% below national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 12.0% (8.0% above national average)

Other data insights:
- Maryland has the #3 highest rate of HIV diagnosis (0.6%), 106.7% higher than the national average
- Maryland has the #5 highest population in multi-generational households (4.6%), 37.9% higher than the national average

A risk factor in Maryland is the state’s high rate of HIV diagnoses, which is more than twice as high as the national average. People with HIV may have underlying health conditions that are linked to falling ill with the virus, such as chronic lung and cardiovascular disease.

23/
Pixabay

Massachusetts

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Seniors (age 65+): 15.8% (1.6% above national average)
- #2. Hispanic/Latino: 11.6% (1.1% below national average)
- #3. Disabled: 11.6% (11.6% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 10.8% (20.9% below national average)
- #2. Healthcare workers: 6.3% (32.0% above national average)
- #3. Food service workers: 4.6% (5.6% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 28.6% (12.6% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 25.7% (17.9% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 13.4% (19.2% below national average)
- #4. Asthma: 10.2% (5.5% above national average)

Massachusetts has nearly 33% more health care workers than the national average, who are at higher risk of contracting the coronavirus. Thousands of these workers in Massachusetts are eligible for added hazard pay for their work during the public health crisis.

24/
Nina Alizada // Shutterstock

Michigan

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 20.4% (27.8% below national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 16.3% (4.8% above national average)
- #3. Disabled: 14.2% (8.4% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 15.0% (9.9% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 6.0% (35.2% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.6% (3.4% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 34.7% (6.0% above national average)
- #2. Obese: 33.0% (5.4% above national average)
- #3. Smokers: 18.9% (13.9% above national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 11.7% (5.3% above national average)

Serious health conditions of hypertension, obesity, and diabetes constitute high coronavirus risk factors for residents of Michigan. Nearly a sixth of the state’s population lives in poverty, another contributing factor to the spread and severity of the pandemic.

25/
Pixabay

Minnesota

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 27.0% (4.5% below national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 15.0% (3.6% below national average)
- #3. Disabled: 10.8% (17.7% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 10.1% (26.0% below national average)
- #2. Healthcare workers: 6.4% (33.9% above national average)
- #3. Uninsured: 4.8% (48.6% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Obese: 30.1% (3.8% below national average)
- #2. Hypertension: 26.6% (18.8% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 15.1% (9.0% below national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 8.9% (19.9% below national average)

The number of health care workers in Minnesota, performing jobs that put them at high risk of exposure to the coronavirus, is over 33% higher than the national average. More than 127,000 people are employed by the state’s health and hospital systems.

26/
Terry Kelly // Shutterstock

Mississippi

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 55.8% (97.4% above national average)
- #2. Black or African American: 37.7% (145.7% above national average)
- #3. Disabled: 16.3% (24.1% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 20.8% (52.3% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 14.7% (58.8% above national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.2% (13.1% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 40.8% (24.6% above national average)
- #2. Obese: 39.5% (26.2% above national average)
- #3. Smokers: 20.5% (23.6% above national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 14.3% (28.7% above national average)

Other data insights:
- Mississippi has the #4 highest population in multi-generational households (4.7%), 40.4% higher than the national average
- Mississippi has the #1 highest incarcerated population (0.6%), 61.3% higher than the national average

Rural populations like that of Mississippi have been hit with high infection rates. The state has about 400 ICU beds in Jackson, its largest hospital service area, but under even moderate projections will need twice that number in the next six months. Also, its high number of multi-generational households—common in rural areas with low wages and a lack of housing options—puts larger, extended families at risk, especially those with older relatives.

You may also like: U.S. metro areas with the worst air pollution

27/
Pixabay

Missouri

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 28.9% (2.1% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 16.1% (3.5% above national average)
- #3. Disabled: 14.5% (10.8% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 14.2% (4.0% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 10.6% (14.3% above national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 5.4% (12.3% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Obese: 35.0% (11.8% above national average)
- #2. Hypertension: 32.0% (2.3% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 19.4% (16.9% above national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 11.5% (3.5% above national average)

A significant number of Missouri residents live in poverty and do not have health insurance, two factors linked to the spread. Most people who lack coverage cannot afford the cost or they work in low-paying jobs where it is not available. Uninsured workers tend to be in fields that put them at greater risk of exposure, such as food service and deliveries.

28/
Pixabay

Montana

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 67.5% (138.8% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 17.6% (13.1% above national average)
- #3. Disabled: 13.5% (3.1% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 13.7% (0.3% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 8.9% (4.5% below national average)
- #3. Food service workers: 5.0% (14.3% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 29.0% (11.4% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 26.9% (14.1% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 18.0% (8.5% above national average)
- #4. Asthma: 10.0% (3.4% above national average)

Other data insights:
- Montana has the #5 highest Native American/Alaska Native population (6.5%), 302.3% higher than the national average

Montana has a significantly high number of residents who are age 65 or older, a population shown to be at greater risk. The CDC says eight out of 10 coronavirus deaths have been among people 65 and over, and the highest risk of death is among people 85 and over.

29/
Pixabay

Nebraska

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 37.5% (32.8% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 15.0% (3.6% below national average)
- #3. Disabled: 11.5% (12.4% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 11.6% (15.0% below national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 9.4% (1.2% above national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 5.2% (9.8% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Obese: 34.1% (8.9% above national average)
- #2. Hypertension: 30.6% (6.5% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 16.0% (3.6% below national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 9.7% (12.7% below national average)

Nebraska’s highly-rural population is particularly susceptible to coronavirus. Residents must travel farther for fewer medical resources. The state is served by dozens of critical-access hospitals—small facilities with limited services in rural areas—but a third of its counties do not have such a hospital.

30/
Pixabay

Nevada

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Hispanic/Latino: 28.5% (143.0% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 15.0% (3.6% below national average)
- #3. Disabled: 12.7% (3.5% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 13.7% (0.3% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 12.2% (31.9% above national average)
- #3. Food service workers: 6.5% (49.3% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 32.6% (0.4% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 29.5% (5.8% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 15.7% (5.4% below national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 10.7% (3.7% below national average)

A large number of Nevada residents work in the food service industry, a field where workers are at greater risk of falling ill with COVID-19. Across the country, food service workers have been declared essential, staying on their jobs as they interact with the public at fast-food windows and grocery checkout lines.

31/
Pixabay

New Hampshire

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 39.6% (40.2% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 17.0% (9.3% above national average)
- #3. Disabled: 12.6% (3.9% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 7.9% (42.1% below national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 6.6% (29.1% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.8% (0.6% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 30.0% (8.4% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 29.6% (5.4% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 15.6% (6.0% below national average)
- #4. Asthma: 11.8% (22.0% above national average)

Other data insights:
- New Hampshire has the #5 highest rate of cancer diagnosis (0.6%), 16.7% higher than the national average

New Hampshire has a largely-rural population that could invite a severe outbreak of coronavirus illness, as many residents must travel long distances to reach medical facilities. A significant gap exists in the number of ICU beds—suitable for treating severely-ill COVID-19 patients—between urban and rural areas across the country. State residents have a high incidence of cancer diagnoses as well.

You may also like: Biggest sources of stress for today's adults

32/
Pixabay

New Jersey

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Hispanic/Latino: 19.9% (69.7% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 15.5% (0.4% below national average)
- #3. Black or African American: 13.5% (12.0% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 10.4% (23.8% below national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 8.5% (8.1% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.6% (3.2% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 33.0% (0.8% above national average)
- #2. Obese: 25.7% (17.9% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 13.1% (21.0% below national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 10.8% (2.8% below national average)

The population of New Jersey has a significantly-high incidence of hypertension, considered a coronavirus risk. People with heart disease and hypertension have been found to suffer severe complications from COVID-19, according to the American Heart Association.

33/
Brent Coultor // Shutterstock

New Mexico

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Hispanic/Latino: 48.5% (313.6% above national average)
- #2. Rural: 36.9% (30.5% above national average)
- #3. Seniors (age 65+): 16.3% (4.8% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 20.0% (46.5% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 10.9% (17.8% above national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.7% (2.5% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Obese: 32.3% (3.2% above national average)
- #2. Hypertension: 30.5% (6.8% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 15.2% (8.4% below national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 12.5% (12.5% above national average)

Other data insights:
- New Mexico has the #2 highest Native American/Alaska Native population (9.6%), 494.2% higher than the national average

Two particular characteristics of New Mexico’s population are high-risk factors. The state has over 300% more Hispanic and Latino residents than the national average, and the second-highest number of Native American. Navajo Nation, which borders northeastern New Mexico, has a higher per-capita case rate than any state in the country, and this population is highly vulnerable due to crowded living quarters and medical disparities.

34/
Pixabay

New York

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Hispanic/Latino: 18.9% (61.2% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 15.6% (0.3% above national average)
- #3. Black or African American: 15.6% (1.7% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 14.6% (6.9% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 6.2% (32.9% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 6.0% (25.4% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 29.4% (10.2% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 27.6% (11.8% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 12.8% (22.9% below national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 11.0% (1.0% below national average)

Other data insights:
- New York has the #2 highest homeless population (0.5%), 198.4% higher than the national average
- New York has the #2 highest rate of HIV diagnosis (0.8%), 145.2% higher than the national average

New York, at the epicenter of the nation’s coronavirus crisis, has a considerable number of health care workers, 25% above the national average. At high risk of personal exposure, they have been treating the state’s hundreds of thousands of coronavirus cases.

35/
Malgorzata Litkowska // Shutterstock

North Carolina

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 26.5% (6.4% below national average)
- #2. Black or African American: 21.5% (40.1% above national average)
- #3. Seniors (age 65+): 15.5% (0.4% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 15.4% (12.8% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 12.4% (34.0% above national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.5% (6.6% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 34.7% (6.0% above national average)
- #2. Obese: 33.0% (5.4% above national average)
- #3. Smokers: 17.4% (4.9% above national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 12.5% (12.5% above national average)

North Carolina has a large Black population and a large poor population, both at significant risk. Data shows that African Americans account for a disproportionately-high share of cases and deaths. One reason is the high rate of heart disease in Black communities.

36/
Pixabay

North Dakota

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 53.8% (90.5% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 14.6% (6.2% below national average)
- #3. Disabled: 10.7% (18.1% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 10.9% (20.2% below national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 7.7% (17.4% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 6.0% (25.0% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Obese: 35.1% (12.1% above national average)
- #2. Hypertension: 29.5% (9.9% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 19.1% (15.1% above national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 9.4% (15.4% below national average)

Other data insights:
- North Dakota has the #3 highest nursing home population (0.7%), 69.8% higher than the national average

North Dakota has one of the highest rates of people living in nursing homes and long-term facilities, which across the country have become the sites of tragic outbreaks. In the United States, 1.3 million people live in nursing homes, many with significant chronic health conditions.

You may also like: Countries with the best life expectancy

37/
Pixabay

Ohio

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 23.8% (15.7% below national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 16.3% (4.8% above national average)
- #3. Disabled: 13.9% (6.2% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 14.5% (6.2% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 7.0% (24.9% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 5.1% (6.5% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 34.7% (6.0% above national average)
- #2. Obese: 34.0% (8.6% above national average)
- #3. Smokers: 20.5% (23.6% above national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 12.2% (9.8% above national average)

Other data insights:
- Ohio has the #5 highest nursing home population (0.6%), 46.5% higher than the national average

Ohio has an abundance of demographic and health factors that increase the risk for severe COVID-19 illness. Among them, the state has a lot of senior residents, a lot of people living in poverty, and a high number of smokers.

38/
Pixabay

Oklahoma

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 40.0% (41.6% above national average)
- #2. Disabled: 15.9% (21.3% above national average)
- #3. Seniors (age 65+): 15.0% (3.6% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Uninsured: 16.3% (75.8% above national average)
- #2. Below poverty level: 16.0% (17.2% above national average)
- #3. Food service workers: 4.1% (5.4% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 37.7% (15.2% above national average)
- #2. Obese: 34.8% (11.2% above national average)
- #3. Smokers: 19.7% (18.7% above national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 12.5% (12.5% above national average)

Other data insights:
- Oklahoma has the #2 highest incarcerated population (0.6%), 60.9% higher than the national average
- Oklahoma has the #4 highest Native American/Alaska Native population (7.5%), 364.2% higher than the national average

Raising the odds of coronavirus spreading in Oklahoma is the size of its prison and Native American populations. Across the country, several thousand inmates have tested positive in densely-populated prisons where the practice of social distancing is largely impractical. About 28,000 people are held in Oklahoma’s state prisons.

39/
Pixabay

Oregon

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 24.4% (13.6% below national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 16.7% (7.3% above national average)
- #3. Disabled: 14.4% (9.9% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 14.1% (3.3% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 8.1% (13.1% below national average)
- #3. Food service workers: 4.6% (6.5% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 30.1% (8.1% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 29.9% (4.5% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 15.6% (6.0% below national average)
- #4. Asthma: 11.6% (19.9% above national average)

Other data insights:
- Oregon has the #4 highest homeless population (0.4%), 147.2% higher than the national average

Oregon’s high homeless population makes it vulnerable to the spread of coronavirus. Homeless people are often unable to practice safe hygiene if they live on the streets and unable to practice social distancing if they stay in shelters with shared facilities.

40/
Pixabay

Pennsylvania

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Seniors (age 65+): 17.4% (11.8% above national average)
- #2. Rural: 15.0% (47.0% below national average)
- #3. Disabled: 13.9% (5.8% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 12.8% (6.3% below national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 5.9% (36.6% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 5.8% (21.3% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 32.6% (0.4% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 30.9% (1.3% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 17.0% (2.5% above national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 11.3% (1.7% above national average)

Other data insights:
- Pennsylvania has the #4 highest rate of cancer diagnosis (0.6%), 17.5% higher than the national average

With such a high rate of cancer diagnoses, Pennsylvania is at heightened risk of residents contracting severe cases of coronavirus. The state also has a significant population of residents aged 65 or older and residents with diabetes, who face a higher danger.

41/
Enfi // Shutterstock

Rhode Island

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Seniors (age 65+): 16.5% (6.1% above national average)
- #2. Hispanic/Latino: 15.0% (27.9% above national average)
- #3. Disabled: 13.6% (3.4% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 13.1% (4.1% below national average)
- #2. Healthcare workers: 5.5% (15.2% above national average)
- #3. Food service workers: 4.6% (7.3% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 33.1% (1.1% above national average)
- #2. Obese: 27.7% (11.5% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 14.6% (12.0% below national average)
- #4. Asthma: 11.9% (23.0% above national average)

Other data insights:
- Rhode Island has the #2 highest nursing home population (0.7%), 70.9% higher than the national average

The number of residents living in nursing homes puts Rhode Island in danger of severe coronavirus outbreaks. In the United States as of early May, more than 19,000 coronavirus deaths have been connected to long-term facilities, many plagued by understaffing, close living quarters, and a lack of protective gear to help fend off the highly-contagious disease.

You may also like: Types of cancer on the rise

42/
Pixabay

South Carolina

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Black or African American: 27.0% (76.0% above national average)
- #2. Rural: 21.8% (22.7% below national average)
- #3. Seniors (age 65+): 16.7% (7.3% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 16.0% (17.2% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 12.2% (31.9% above national average)
- #3. Food service workers: 4.4% (1.0% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 38.1% (16.4% above national average)
- #2. Obese: 34.3% (9.6% above national average)
- #3. Smokers: 18.0% (8.5% above national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 13.3% (19.7% above national average)

In South Carolina, residents suffer from high rates of diabetes, obesity, and hypertension, and roughly one in six lives in poverty, all high-risk factors for coronavirus to spread and take a heavy toll. The southern state’s Black and senior populations, both vulnerable to the impact of the pandemic, are much higher than the national averages.

43/
Pixabay

South Dakota

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 58.5% (106.8% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 15.8% (1.6% above national average)
- #3. Disabled: 11.8% (10.0% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 13.6% (0.4% below national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 11.2% (20.4% above national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 5.2% (9.1% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 30.8% (5.9% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 30.1% (3.8% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 19.0% (14.5% above national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 9.3% (16.3% below national average)

Other data insights:
- South Dakota has the #3 highest Native American/Alaska Native population (8.7%), 438.5% higher than the national average
- South Dakota has the #4 highest nursing home population (0.7%), 59.9% higher than the national average

South Dakota’s nursing-home population, almost 60% higher than the national average, signals its vulnerability to the deadly virus. One in five U.S. coronavirus deaths has occurred in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities. Not only do residents often have preexisting health problems, but a lack of protective gear, understaffing, and close quarters are blamed as well. Across the country, nursing home staff say they are paid such low wages that they work more than one job, potentially spreading the virus among facilities.

44/
CrackerClips Stock Media // Shutterstock

Tennessee

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 27.4% (3.0% below national average)
- #2. Black or African American: 16.8% (9.5% above national average)
- #3. Seniors (age 65+): 15.7% (0.9% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 16.1% (17.9% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 11.7% (25.9% above national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.5% (5.8% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 38.7% (18.2% above national average)
- #2. Obese: 34.4% (9.9% above national average)
- #3. Smokers: 20.7% (24.8% above national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 13.8% (24.2% above national average)

Other data insights:
- Tennessee has the #3 highest rate of chronic lung disease (10.6%), 49.9% higher than the national average
- Tennessee has the #5 highest rate of major cardiovascular disease (11.5%), 33.3% higher than the national average
- Tennessee has the #5 highest rate of chronic kidney disease (3.9%), 29.8% higher than the national average

Tennessee has an array of serious health troubles, which makes state residents vulnerable to severe cases of COVID-19. Coronavirus attacks the lungs with deadly force, and Tennessee’s rate of chronic lung disease is nearly 50% higher than the nation’s average and third highest nationwide.

45/
Pixabay

Texas

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Hispanic/Latino: 39.2% (234.3% above national average)
- #2. Rural: 13.8% (51.3% below national average)
- #3. Black or African American: 12.1% (21.1% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Uninsured: 20.2% (118.0% above national average)
- #2. Below poverty level: 15.5% (13.5% above national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.4% (8.5% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Obese: 34.8% (11.2% above national average)
- #2. Hypertension: 32.5% (0.7% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 14.4% (13.2% below national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 12.6% (13.4% above national average)

Other data insights:
- Texas has the #3 highest population in multi-generational households (4.9%), 45.7% higher than the national average

Texas has a huge Latino population, more than twice the national average, that ranks as a risk factor for the spread of coronavirus. It also has a significant number of residents who live in multi-generational households, where extended families are likely to be large and include older and elderly relatives who are particularly susceptible to falling severely ill with COVID-19.

46/
Pixabay

Utah

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 14.9% (47.4% below national average)
- #2. Hispanic/Latino: 13.9% (18.5% above national average)
- #3. Seniors (age 65+): 10.5% (32.5% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Uninsured: 10.4% (11.7% above national average)
- #2. Below poverty level: 10.3% (24.6% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 3.8% (21.0% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Obese: 27.8% (11.2% below national average)
- #2. Hypertension: 24.5% (25.2% below national average)
- #3. Asthma: 9.3% (3.9% below national average)
- #4. Smokers: 9.0% (45.8% below national average)

Utah has a higher number of Latino residents than the national average, a population that overall has been getting hit hard by the coronavirus. The state also has a higher-than-average number of uninsured residents. Often, people lack insurance because they cannot afford it and work in low-paying service jobs that put them in close contact with the public, adding to their risk of becoming sick.

You may also like: 40 most nutritious fruits and vegetables, according to experts

47/
Pixabay

Vermont

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 71.2% (152.0% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 18.2% (17.0% above national average)
- #3. Disabled: 14.4% (9.6% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 11.2% (18.0% below national average)
- #2. Healthcare workers: 5.3% (11.5% above national average)
- #3. Uninsured: 4.6% (51.0% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 30.4% (7.1% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 27.5% (12.1% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 13.7% (17.4% below national average)
- #4. Asthma: 12.0% (24.1% above national average)

A significant number of seniors live in Vermont, constituting a big risk factor. Older adults tend to have chronic diseases that boost their chances of falling severely ill from COVID-19, according to the CDC.

48/
John Bilous // Shutterstock

Virginia

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Black or African American: 19.2% (25.1% above national average)
- #2. Rural: 14.8% (47.5% below national average)
- #3. Seniors (age 65+): 14.6% (6.2% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 10.9% (20.2% below national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 10.0% (7.6% above national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.2% (12.5% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 32.4% (1.0% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 30.4% (2.9% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 14.9% (10.2% below national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 10.5% (5.5% below national average)

Virginia has a sizable Black population that has been particularly vulnerable to coronavirus infection. African Americans are more likely to lack insurance or have less access to quality medical care, raising the likelihood of chronic health conditions such as diabetes and heart disease.

49/
Pixabay

Washington

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Seniors (age 65+): 14.7% (5.5% below national average)
- #2. Rural: 13.9% (50.7% below national average)
- #3. Disabled: 12.7% (3.2% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 11.5% (15.8% below national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 7.6% (18.3% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 4.3% (9.5% below national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 29.5% (9.9% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 28.7% (8.3% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 12.0% (27.7% below national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 9.9% (10.9% below national average)

Washington was the first state with a confirmed COVID-19 case, the first related death, and the first reported outbreak in a nursing home. Its demographics and economics do not signal high risks of outbreak potential, however, and the state imposed stringent social distancing practices to help keep the virus from spreading.

50/
Pixabay

West Virginia

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 40.3% (42.4% above national average)
- #2. Disabled: 19.5% (48.7% above national average)
- #3. Seniors (age 65+): 18.8% (20.8% above national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 17.8% (30.4% above national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 7.3% (21.6% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 5.1% (5.7% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 43.5% (32.9% above national average)
- #2. Obese: 39.5% (26.2% above national average)
- #3. Smokers: 25.2% (51.9% above national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 16.2% (45.8% above national average)

Other data insights:
- West Virginia has the #1 highest rate of major cardiovascular disease (14.2%), 64.6% higher than the national average
- West Virginia has the #1 highest rate of chronic lung disease (15.3%), 116.3% higher than the national average
- West Virginia has the #1 highest rate of chronic kidney disease (4.6%), 53.1% higher than the national average
- West Virginia has the #2 highest rate of cancer diagnosis (0.6%), 20.6% higher than the national average

Cardiovascular disease is linked to higher rates of severe coronavirus cases, putting West Virginia in vulnerable territory. Doctors say the novel virus may force the heart to pump harder, might be invading heart cells, and might trigger immune cells that attack the heart. The prevalence of heart disease is combined with other risky factors in the rural state like high rates of cancer, hypertension, obesity, diabetes, and smoking. West Virginia was the first state to require COVID-19 testing of all nursing home residents and staff.

 

51/
Pixabay

Wisconsin

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 30.9% (9.1% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 16.0% (2.8% above national average)
- #3. Disabled: 11.7% (10.5% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Below poverty level: 11.9% (12.9% below national average)
- #2. Uninsured: 6.0% (35.7% below national average)
- #3. Healthcare workers: 5.4% (13.5% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Obese: 32.0% (2.2% above national average)
- #2. Hypertension: 30.8% (5.9% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 16.4% (1.2% below national average)
- #4. Asthma: 9.0% (7.0% below national average)

The incidence of obesity in Wisconsin is a key risk factor for severe coronavirus cases. Medical experts say obese people have lower oxygen levels and weaker chest function, making it difficult for them to fight the impacts of COVID-19.

52/
Pixabay

Wyoming

Biggest at-risk demographic groups:
- #1. Rural: 69.4% (145.3% above national average)
- #2. Seniors (age 65+): 15.1% (2.9% below national average)
- #3. Disabled: 13.0% (1.2% below national average)

Biggest at-risk economic groups:
- #1. Uninsured: 11.6% (24.8% above national average)
- #2. Below poverty level: 11.1% (18.7% below national average)
- #3. Food service workers: 4.4% (0.4% above national average)

Biggest at-risk epidemiological groups:
- #1. Hypertension: 30.8% (5.9% below national average)
- #2. Obese: 29.0% (7.4% below national average)
- #3. Smokers: 18.8% (13.3% above national average)
- #4. Diabetes: 8.7% (21.7% below national average)

With so much of its population living in rural areas, Wyoming’s vulnerability to coronavirus is heightened. Rural areas have far fewer hospitals and health care workers, and people must travel farther to get medical care. Those living in rural America—including nearly one in five Wyoming residents—are also more likely to smoke, which is linked to contracting the virus. Experts say smokers are more likely to touch their face, and smoking destroys the tiny hair-like cilia in lungs that are a critical defense against infection.

You may also like: Healthiest cities in America

2018 All rights reserved.