SEOUL, July 10 (Korea Bizwire) — A recent study has revealed that the coronavirus mortality rate varies according to income level.
Among COVID-19 patients, the fatality rate of medical care beneficiaries whose medical expenses are supported by the government was found to be about three times higher than for the beneficiaries of employee health insurance.
Kim Jae-yong, a professor at the Institute of Artificial Intelligence and Big Data in Medicine at Yonsei University’s Wonju College of Medicine, analyzed the dynamic factors that impact the death of coronavirus patients in a paper published in the Journal of Korean Medical Science.
The study used the National Health Insurance Service’s big data on 9,148 confirmed coronavirus patients in South Korea.
Among the patients, 130 (67 men and 63 women) succumbed to the disease. Those between the ages of 75 and 79 accounted for the largest share of the total, at 32.
Among the patients covered by the study, 727 were medical care beneficiaries, with 26 fatalities.
The study found that the COVID-19 mortality rate of medical care beneficiaries was about 2.8 times higher than that of those ranking in the upper 20 percent in the employee health insurance program.
“It can be assumed that among coronavirus patients, medical care beneficiaries with low income are more likely to suffer from chronic diseases that could impact their health,“ Kim said.
“The overall health condition of medical care beneficiaries is worse than high income earners, resulting in the increase in their COVID-19 mortality rate.“
M. H. Lee (email@example.com)