The controversial death of George Floyd is a startling reminder that issues related to the colour of one's skin still exist in modern society. Despite the call to end racial profiling, it appears to remain a problem within law enforcement personnel. As the world calls for solidarity against these matters, many seem to have forgotten that the COVID-19 pandemic still rages on. Now, a study done by U.K. scientists claims that minorities are at a higher risk of death from the 2019 novel coronavirus.

According to ABC News, the data gathered by researchers supposedly shows that ethnicity might be a factor as with certain types of diseases. The numbers were reportedly higher than those of Caucasians, as noted by public health officials. Former deputy chair of the British Medical Association, Dr. Kailash Chand, expressed concerns that some might see it as "whitewash" as there were no recommendations that followed.

This particular study was purportedly commissioned in April by the British government, which, at the time, saw a massive spike of COVID-19 cases in the country. Among those highlighted were Pakistani, Caribbean, Indian, African-American, and other Asian minorities are more likely to die from complications brought about by SARS-CoV-2. The rate is listed at around 10 to 50 percent higher than their white fellow citizens.

"Being black or from a minority ethnic background is a major risk factor," said Secretary of State for Health and Social Care Matt Hancock. "This is a particularly timely publication because right across the world people are angry about racial injustice." He also assured the public that the government will launch a follow-up investigation to determine if there was anything missed by the researchers. "I totally understand the urgency, the importance and the sensitivity of getting this right," he added.

UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock
Britain's Health Secretary Matt Hancock makes a statement in parliament with social distancing measures in place. Photo: PRU / -

Some medical experts point out that the study might have not accounted for pre-existing conditions such as obesity, diabetes, heart problems, and others. Moreover, occupations and household densities should also be taken into consideration. So far, the biggest factor remains the age of the COVID-19 patient. Those under 40 have a better chance of survival than people over 80 and above.