When cancer survivor Blanca Quintero got COVID-19, her doctors in California weren’t answering her calls, The Washington Post reports.
She ended up seeking care 2 hours away—in Mexicali, Mexico.
Her story, all too common across the Eastern Coachella valley, is emblematic of a national failure.
- The COVID-19 death rate in Latino communities is at least double that for whites and Asian Americans.
- The pandemic has eroded Latinos’ life expectancy by about 3 years during 2020.
Latinos in northern California’s Bay Area also suffered multiple oversights, according to The Mercury News:
- Testing: Majority Latino communities were consistently tested at low rates relative to risk
- Shelter-in-place Orders: The needs of essential workers including many Latinos who live in crowded, multi-generational homes were ignored.
- Contact Tracing: Insufficient numbers of Spanish-speaking tracers were deployed.
Worse Still: Just 12% of Bay Area Latinos, compared to 40% of whites, had gotten at least a first shot by early March.
The Quote: “You get tired of jumping up and down and saying, ‘Look at us over here. Hello, we’re dying,’” says San Jose nonprofit leader Maritza Maldonado.