Back to top
Live:
Coronavirus Updates

Philippe Turpin/Photononstop, Getty Images

Distance and low density can offer some protection against the spread of infectious diseases like COVID-19, but rural areas also have their own unique challenges when it comes to an infectious disease like the coronavirus.

American Heart Association News: Far From Immune, Rural Areas Face Unique COVID-19 Challenges

THURSDAY, April 30, 2020 (American Heart Association News) -- Since late last year, COVID-19 has been overwhelming health care facilities in urban areas around the world, causing more than 12,200 deaths so far in New York City alone.

As has become increasingly clear, however, rural areas are not immune.

During the past month, hundreds of pork plant workers in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, have tested positive for COVID-19 – one of many outbreaks in meat processing facilities throughout the country. And the Navajo Nation reservation, which includes parts of Arizona, Utah and New Mexico, has more than 1,600 cases.

While distance and low density offer some protection against the spread of infectious diseases, rural areas also have their own unique vulnerabilities.

"We see higher rates of hypertension, heart disease, obesity and less physical activity in rural areas," said Dr. Regina Benjamin, the 18th U.S. surgeon general under President Barack Obama. She founded a health clinic in rural Alabama and continues to work there today.

"All of those things contribute to overall health in rural communities," she said, and serious underlying health conditions may increase the risk of severe illness from COVID-19.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, rates for heart disease, cancer, unintentional injury, chronic lower respiratory disease and stroke – the five leading causes of death in the United States – are higher in rural areas than in urban ones.

Read the full American Heart Association story.

Watch our latest HealthDay Now as we recap the highlights of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Annual Meeting 2021.

Mabel Jong from our liveblog team speaks with Dr. Antoni Ribas, former president of the American Association for Cancer Research and professor of medicine at UCLA, and Anna Plym, PhD, a postdoctoral research fellow at Brigham and Women's Hospital.

Watch the in-depth discussion above, and see our past HealthDay Nows and other videos on our YouTube channel.

HD Live! Videos

Watch our latest HD Live! as we take a look at the COVID-19 pandemic and the vaccination rollout and how they've impacted people of color.

Mabel Jong from our liveblog team speaks with:

  • Tasha Clark-Amar, CEO, East Baton Rouge Council on Aging
  • Jill Ramirez, Executive Director, Latino HealthCare Forum (Austin)
  • Vickie Mays, PhD, Professor, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health

Watch the in-depth discussion above, and see our past HD Lives and other videos on our YouTube channel.

Watch our latest HD Live! as we take a look at the global COVID-19 vaccination rollout and how the United States rollout compares.

Mabel Jong from our liveblog team speaks with Dr. Ran Balicer of Clalit Health Services and Dr. Arnold Monto of University of Michigan School of Public Health.

Watch the in-depth discussion above, and see our past HD Lives and other videos on our YouTube channel.

UPDATE 1/26/21: Since our HD Live! interview with CEO Andrei Doroshin, the Philadelphia Health Department has severed its ties with the organization. The nonprofit has changed its status to a for-profit entity.

Watch our latest HD Live! as we take a look at Philly Fighting Covid, a nonprofit organization run by graduate students from Drexel University that aims to help with mass COVID-19 vaccination in Philadelphia.

Mabel Jong from our liveblog team speaks with Andrei Doroshin, founder of Philly Fighting Covid.

Watch the in-depth discussion above, and see our past HD Lives and other videos on our YouTube channel.

Watch our latest HD Live! as we take a deep dive into the vaccine rollout across the country.

Mabel Jong from our liveblog team speaks with Dr. Michael Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota and a member of the Biden COVID-19 Advisory Board.

Watch the in-depth discussion above, and see our past HD Lives and other videos on our YouTube channel.

Watch our latest HD Live! as we take a deep dive into the latest information on the COVID-19 vaccines, including the rollout process, potential side effects, supply and distribution.

Mabel Jong from our liveblog team speaks with Dr. Paul Offit, Director of the Vaccine Education Center and an attending physician in the Division of Infectious Diseases at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and one of the physicians on the FDA Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee.

Watch the in-depth discussion above, and see our past HD Lives and other videos on our YouTube channel.

Watch our latest HD Live! as we take a look back and a look ahead at COVID-19 and its impact on the United States and its healthcare workers.

Mabel Jong from our liveblog team speaks with Dr. David Shulkin, former Secretary of Veterans Affairs, ex-CEO of Beth Israel Medical Center in New York and an accomplished healthcare executive, and Dr. Joel Zivot, anesthesiologist and clinician at Emory University Hospital ICU.

Watch the in-depth discussion above, and see our past HD Lives and other videos on our YouTube channel.

Watch our latest HD Live! with Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID).

Mabel Jong from our liveblog team speaks with Dr. Anthony Fauci about the latest on COVID-19, including the vaccines, the infection rates and the future.

Watch the in-depth discussion above, and see our past HD Lives and other videos on our YouTube channel.

Our latest HD Live! is a conference wrap-up of the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions 2020.

Mabel Jong from our liveblog team speaks with Dr. Donald Lloyd-Jones, American Heart Association President-Elect, for a summary of the highlights of the AHA Scientific Sessions 2020.

Watch the in-depth discussion above, and see our past HD Lives and other videos on our YouTube channel.