To assess whether county age distribution is associated with age-specific COVID-19 infection, emergency department, hospitalization, and mortality rates.
Floridaʼs 2020 COVID-19 cases are summarized into age-specific county rates and supplemented with socioeconomic and demographic characteristics and 2020 presidential voting results to assess the association of population age structure and political choices with age-specific COVID-19 infection, emergency, hospitalization, and mortality rates.
Younger counties experienced higher under-25 infection rates, as well as higher over-64 infection, emergency, and hospitalization rates. Older counties experienced reduced infection rates for all ages and decreased over-64 emergency and hospitalization rates. Trumpʼs vote share was associated with higher infection rates for all and higher over-64 emergency, hospitalization, and mortality rates.
Younger counties experience higher COVID-19 infection rates for all residents, with elevated morbidity risks among seniors. Older counties had lower COVID-19 infection, emergency, and hospitalization rates. Age-specific messaging may help slow pandemic spread.