Spectrum: UC finds rural areas face unique threat from COVID-19

Spectrum TV talked to the University of Cincinnati about its latest public health policy report about coronavirus in rural America.

Coronavirus infections are hitting rural parts of the United States previously spared, requiring a new approach to battling the pandemic, a multidisciplinary team of UC researchers said.

UC’s Geospatial Health Advising Group found that rural counties in high-infection states face higher mortality rates than cities.

Spectrum spoke with UC assistant professor of geography Diego Cuadros about UC’s analysis.

“We were interested in trying to identify the factors that were associated with higher mortality risk linked to COVID-19 in the entire country. So, we conducted this analysis, trying to find those risk factors,” Cuadros told Spectrum TV.

The UC Geospatial Health Advising Group is a collaboration of health, geography and statistical modeling experts from the UC College of Pharmacy and the UC College of Arts and Sciences.

“We are seeing a very big spread of infection in the rural areas, compared to the open areas, especially in rural areas are the ones who are experiencing a high incidence of infection and also high mortality – we were seeing a reduction of the mortality rate in most part of the country but in these particular (rural) areas, their mortality is not is not declining, it’s actually increasing,” Cuadros said.

Read the Spectrum TV story.

Featured image at top: UC’s Geospatial Health Advising Group warns that rural America faces a unique risk from the coronavirus pandemic. Photo/Brittney Burnett/Unsplash

Diego Cuadros stands in front of a map of the United States.

UC assistant professor Diego Cuadros directs UC’s Health Geography and Disease Modeling Lab in the UC College of Arts and Sciences. Photo/Andrew Higley/UC Creative + Brand

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