Note: This thread is related to #Coronavirus #COVID19

Follow the World Health Organization's instructions to reduce your risk of infection:

1/ Frequently clean hands by using alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.

2/ When coughing and sneezing cover mouth and nose with flexed elbow or tissue - throw issue away immediately and wash hands.

3/ Avoid close contact with anyone that has fever and cough.

Rhea Boyd MD, MPH+ Your Authors @RheaBoydMD A pediatrician and hopeful participant in democracy. Trying to do the right thing by the children of the world, one day at a time. Jun. 18, 2020 3 min read + Your Authors

To all of those now asking:

"What can we do about the racial health inequities emerging amid COVID-19?"

I'm starting a list, right here, that I invite my colleagues to add to.

Because remember, solutions to racism are clear. What we have lacked is courage and political will.

1. Universal Health Care.

This is universal care, not universal insurance. Insurance is an artificial barrier that places powerful profit incentives between people and care. And it is the origin of our tiered, and sometimes racially segregated, health care delivery structure.

2. Universal COVID-19 testing in Black, Latinx, and Indigenous communities.

That means testing everyone, even the asymptomatic, in communities plagued by the ails of residential segregation (crowded conditions, air pollutants, lack of clean water, and public divestment).

Why test everyone? Because to adequately treat the burden of disease and assess the risk present in communities suffering the consequences of centuries of segregation, we have to test and trace all who are potentially affected, including those whose infection is sub-clinical.

3. Redistribute PPE.

The healthcare workforce is predominantly white at every level. If we only prioritize healthcare workers in the allocation of limited PPE stores, we exclude the non-white populations who are minoritized in the healthcare industry.

This is something healthcare systems could start doing, right now.

Share PPE. Collectively negotiate for PPE stores with essential workers who labor in critical supply chains. This will broaden protections to the non-white populations who make up the essential workforce.

4. Universal Worker Protections.

Every worker in America needs paid sick leave and a living wage. Raise the minimum wage to fit inflation (at least $15 and likely more) and ensure essential workers have hazard pay, PPE, and liability insurance to guard against COVID inequities.

5. House the homeless.

Our nation can afford it. And Black (40%), Latinx (22%), and Indigenous (3%) populations make up a disproportionate amount of our nation's homeless population.

6. End Child and Family Detention.

Congregate settings like immigrant detention facilities increase risk for COVID-19 spread and have poor health care access.

7. Universal Broadband Access.

Every US household needs guaranteed, high-speed internet to participate in remote work, learning, and telehealth. Without it, as vital public services transition online, we will predictably exclude those who lack wifi and wifi enabled devices.

8. Decarcerate the enormous US Prison Population.

8 of the 10 largest COVID outbreaks in the US were in correctional facilities. And Black, Latinx, and Indigenous populations are disproportionately confined in the US carceral apparatus, a high risk setting for COVID spread.

9. Universal Access to Clean Drinking Water

Hand washing is a critical infectious disease prevention technique. Yet, race is the strongest predictor of access to clean water in the US. Indigenous (19x) and Black (2x) households are less likely have clean water than white homes.

10. End police violence.

Use of force or tear gas can also increase spread of COVID-19, for civilians and officers. And communities of color, particularly Black folks, are overly burdened with these exposures. Also, defund the police to direct public resources towards care.

11. End Residential Segregation.

One national study found that ending residential segregation in the US would end the Black-White gap in income, wealth, and education in the US. And financial resources allow people to purchase the protections they need to stay well.

12. Universal Masking.

Everyone should get a free mask. No one should have to cover their face with a t-shirt when our nation has the resources to ensure every single person has a mask.

And for those who say, don't just tweet about it, do something...here is a link to my testimony to Congress.

It lays out the evidence for these recommendations:  https://bit.ly/3fEFIar 

Ask your lawmakers to be bold in making these changes!


You can follow @RheaBoydMD.



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