The Covid-19 pandemic has driven up death rates for heart disease and strokes in the U.S., a new study demonstrated, widening already significant racial and ethnic disparities in health outcomes.

Mortality rates from heart disease and stroke rose 4.3% and 6.4% respectively in 2020, part of a larger wave of excess deaths in the first year of the pandemic, according to a study published Wednesday in the journal JAMA Network Open. Overall, the U.S. mortality rate jumped 15.9% that year, according to the analysis, which was based on data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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