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HPIO analysis sheds light on COVID-19 impact on Ohioans

The Health Policy Institute of Ohio released new analysis this week illustrating the devastating impact of COVID-19 in Ohio.

HPIO analysis found that, over the past two weeks, deaths of people with COVID-19 in Ohio surpassed all cancer deaths during the same week in 2019 and are nearly as high as heart disease, the first and second leading causes of death in the state last year.

Since the first deaths of Ohioans with COVID-19 were reported in March, the number of people dying with the virus has been comparable to many of the leading causes of death in previous years, such as drug overdose deaths, motor vehicle crashes, stroke and diabetes, kidney disease and suicide. A spike in reported COVID-19 deaths beginning in early November, however, has made COVID-19 the second leading cause of death compared to 2019 data (see graphic below).


Additional HPIO analysis released this week found that more Black/African American Ohioans have died with COVID-19 this year than from most leading causes of death in 2019, including any specific type of cancer, stroke, diabetes and unintentional drug overdose deaths.

Between March 17 and Dec. 15, 1,065 Black/African American Ohioans died with COVID-19. In 2019, 790 died of a stroke or other cerebrovascular diseases and 639 died from trachea, bronchus and lung cancer, the type of cancer responsible for the most deaths. COVID-19 deaths currently rank fourth among leading causes of death compared to 2019 data, behind heart disease (3,355 deaths), all cancers combined (2,677 deaths) and unintentional injury (1,127, including drug overdose deaths, motor vehicle crashes and other accidents). See graphic below.