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Racial differences in management and outcomes of acute myocardial infarction during COVID-19 pandemic


Objective There are concerns that healthcare and outcomes of black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) communities are disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. We investigated admission rates, treatment and mortality of BAME with acute myocardial infarction (AMI) during COVID-19.

Methods Using multisource national healthcare records, patients hospitalised with AMI in England during 1 February–27 May 2020 were included in the COVID-19 group, whereas patients admitted during the same period in the previous three consecutive years were included in a pre-COVID-19 group. Multilevel hierarchical regression analyses were used to quantify the changes in-hospital and 7-day mortality in BAME compared with whites.

Results Of 73 746 patients, higher proportions of BAME patients (16.7% vs 10.1%) were hospitalised with AMI during the COVID-19 period compared with pre-COVID-19. BAME patients admitted during the COVID-19 period were younger, male and likely to present with ST-elevation acute myocardial infarction. COVID-19 BAME group admitted with non-ST-elevation acute myocardial infarction less frequently received coronary angiography (86.1% vs 90.0%, p<0.001) and had a longer median delay to reperfusion (4.1 hours vs 3.7 hours, p<0.001) compared with whites. BAME had higher in-hospital (OR 1.68, 95% CI 1.27 to 2.28) and 7-day mortality (OR 1.81 95% CI 1.31 to 2.19) during COVID-19 compared with pre-COVID-19 period.

Conclusion In this multisource linked cohort study, compared with whites, BAME patients had proportionally higher hospitalisation rates with AMI, less frequently received guidelines indicated care and had higher early mortality during COVID-19 period compared with pre-COVID-19 period. There is a need to develop clinical pathways to achieve equity in the management of these vulnerable populations.

  • acute coronary syndrome
  • outcome assessment
  • health care

Data availability statement

Data may be obtained from a third party (National Institute of Cardiovascular Outcome Research) and are not publicly available.

This article is made freely available for use in accordance with BMJ’s website terms and conditions for the duration of the covid-19 pandemic or until otherwise determined by BMJ. You may use, download and print the article for any lawful, non-commercial purpose (including text and data mining) provided that all copyright notices and trade marks are retained.

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