The spread of COVID-19, or the novel coronavirus pandemic, has disproportionately impacted Black Americans around the country, leading to new cases in major cities like New Orleans. This week, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, has come out to confirm that institutional racism is a contributing factor to the severe impact the virus has on the Black community.
“And I cannot imagine that that has not contributed to the conditions that they find themselves in, economically and otherwise. So the answer, Congressman, is yes….We know from a lot of experience now, that the situation regarding whether or not you have serious consequences, hospitalizations, intubations, complications and death relate very strongly to the prevalence and incidence of underlying co-morbid conditions, which are clearly more expressed in the African American population than the rest of the population.”
Fauci: “Would I consider institutional racism as contributing?…Obviously the African American community has suffered from racism for a very, very long period of time and I cannot imagine that hasn’t contributed….so the answer, congressman, is ‘yes.’” pic.twitter.com/pAI1lU6zu5
— Tim O’Brien (@TimOBrien) June 23, 2020
“And then when they do get infected, given the social determinants of health which make … them have a higher incidence of diseases like hypertension, obesity, diabetes,” Fauci continued. “They are at much greater risk of suffering the deleterious consequences, including death.”