Black people more likely to be hospitalized with flu


Flu season is here and vaccinations are increasing, but a new report finds that Black people are less likely to participate in flu vaccines — and more likely to be hospitalized.

According to a report by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), citing data from 2009 to 2022, Black adults are almost twice as likely to become hospitalized with the flu as white or Asian adults. 

High rates of hospitalization

Since 2009, flu-related hospitalization rates for Black people have shown to be 80% higher than those for white people.

Hospitalization often occurs due to serious flu complications that can even become life threatening. Contributing factors include pre-existing health conditions like asthma, diabetes, obesity, and other chronic conditions.

Lower vaccine rates

Black and brown people, generally, get the flu vaccine at lower rates – around 40% – while the overall national average is closer to 50%, the CDC reports.

The CDC attributed “distrust” and a “lack of access to health care and insurance, missed opportunities to vaccinate, and misinformation” for the low number of flu vaccinations among the Black community.


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