Equitable Data Collection and Disclosure on COVID-19 Act Statement
April 14, 2020—Meharry Medical College applauds the introduction today of the Equitable Data Collection and Disclosure on COVID-19 Act, legislation filed by the Congressional Black Caucus and key members of Congress to require the Department of Health and Human Services to collect and report racial, ethnic and other demographic data on COVID-19 testing, treatment and fatality rates.
Meharry President and CEO Dr. James E.K. Hildreth Sr., an international infectious disease expert, and his administration were proud to work with Congresswoman Karen Bass (CA-37), Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus and Congresswomen Robin Kelly (IL-02), chair of The Congressional Black Caucus Health Braintrust to help shape the legislation.
COVID-19 is disproportionately impacting communities of color across the United States, and this bill is the first step in beginning to move forward toward a national solution to COVID-19. Meharry looks forward to playing an active role in the data collection and analysis in the coming weeks, and to working further with Congress on additional areas of need, including testing, treatment and drug development.
Dr. Hildreth said: “COVID-19 does not see color. But it does see – and viciously attacks – people with underlying health conditions: lung, heart and kidney disease, as well as cancer, diabetes and other chronic illnesses. Minority and underserved communities suffer and die disproportionately from these diseases. Armed with this essential data, leaders across the country can begin to make decisions that will protect all our residents – those of every color, ethnicity and socioeconomic status.”