New York City Department of Health Racism is a public health crisis
The Council of the New York City Health Bureau passed a resolution declaring that racism is a public health crisis in New York City, calling on the city and relevant departments to face up to and take measures to solve the long-standing racism problem in the health system.
Dave Chokshi, Director of the Department of Health, said, “ Ethnic inequality has deepened during the epidemic, and minority communities have become more miserable. In order to make New York a healthier city, we must face racism as a public issue we face. Health crisis.”
The Federal Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other cities across the country also recently stated that racism is a threat to the public health system. CDC Director Rochelle Walensky pointed out that racism is a serious threat to public health, which directly affects the well-being of the people and hinders the health of the country.
Public health experts expressed appreciation for the resolution of the Department of Health, believing that they dared to face and expose the problem. Ayman El-Mohandes, Dean of the School of Health of the City University of New York, said that the resolution has sounded a wake-up call for us. Public health is One of the areas where racism most often manifests.
The New York City Board of Health declared racism a public health crisis on Monday, passing a resolution that directed the Health Department to take steps to ensure a “racially just recovery” from the coronavirus pandemic. https://t.co/WsdmOViquF
— The New York Times (@nytimes) October 19, 2021
Emohandes has done research on the health consequences of racism. He believes that although the issue of racism in the health system is unacceptable, it is a reality. After the outbreak, more ethnic minorities are front-line workers, and they are more vulnerable to infection. During the epidemic, the infection rate and death rate of African Americans and other minorities were high, the life expectancy of African Americans and Hispanics decreased, and the vaccination rate was low.
The resolution pointed out that before the outbreak, the Municipal Health Bureau’s data on AIDS, tuberculosis, maternal deaths, infant deaths, mental illnesses, chronic diseases and death rates, gun violence, and homicides all showed racial differences.
The Health Bureau has long been a problem of inadequate attention and insufficient investment in the health of ethnic minority communities such as African Americans. The Council urged the Health Bureau to recognize and conduct a review. In order to solve the problems of racism and inequality in the health field, the council will set up an “equal data” agency to make recommendations for changes to New York City’s laws and regulations.
The resolution of the council requires the Municipal Health Bureau to cooperate with other departments of the city government to comprehensively resolve structural racism in terms of internal policies, plans, budgets, and medical services, and report specific measures and progress to the council every year twice.
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