HOUSTON, Texas — 2020 was the deadliest year in Harris County in the last decade according to new data from Harris County Precinct 2.
The data shows deaths among Hispanics rose by almost 47 percent from 2019 to 2020.
The most of any other group.
Harris County Precinct 2 Commissioner Adrian Garcia has been outspoken about the health disparities they see in his precinct, particularly in the Hispanic community.
He said they include high rates of diabetes and asthma combined with low rate of insurance coverage.
Harris County Public Health District Deputy Director Gwen Sims said in 2020 the death rate among Hispanics jumped 46.6 percent from the previous year of which 22 percent of deaths were contributed to COVID-19.
Garcia said they must address disparities affecting this group and it starts with getting vaccinated.
Garcia said COVID-19 vaccine will save lives.
“It’s not like a hurricane where swift waters are taking someone and we we’re trying to figure out where’s the rope, where’s the ladder, who is the first responders to dive in and rescue a life,” Garcia said. “We can rescue lives today by those who are not vaccinated stepping forward.”
Commissioner Garcia says total deaths from all causes in the county were also up 22 percent last year.