Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and COVID-19

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, and the COVID-19 Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has presented unprecedented challenges to our healthcare, education, and research missions. It is critical that we remain mindful of diversity, equity & inclusion principles now and going forward.  

UW–Madison School of Medicine & Public Health Respect Statement:

COVID-19 is not specific to an ethnicity or race—disease does not discriminate. Racist behaviors or stereotyping are not tolerated at UW–Madison. If you experience harassment or discrimination, students are encouraged to file a bias incident report. Employees may file a complaint with the Office of Compliance.

Learn more about UW–Madison's response to COVID-19.

Focusing on our community:

While we are all experiencing the COVID-19 pandemic, we are not all experiencing it in the same way.  Long-standing socio-economic, racial, and ethnic disparities have been exacerbated during the pandemic. This has been manifested in disparities in disease and death rates, disparities in access to safe physical distancing, gaps in internet service, and family and medical leave, and access to health insurance.  Understanding the ways that COVID-19 is impacting the women and families in our community will help us better serve their health needs.

For additional context, read this excellent interview on racial/ethnic disparities and COVID-19 in the U.S. with Dr. Tiffany Green, assistant professor in UW Ob-Gyn and the UW-Madison Department of Population Health Sciences, in Medical News Today: ‘A no-win situation’ – Expert weighs in on COVID-19 racial disparities

Local Resources:

  1. Curated resources for the Madison community: A group of volunteers has gathered a crowdsourced, robust list of resources to address financial, logistical, and emotional challenges of COVID-19. An additional resource collection has been generated by the Office of Community Health in the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health. 

Data:

The Neighborhood Health Partnership Program has developed the Severe Risk for COVID-19 Reports, which provide health officials with information that highlights which ZIP codes in Wisconsin are at higher risk for having many severe COVID-19 cases. Funding for this work was provided by the Wisconsin Partnership Program.

Professional Resources:

  1. COVID-19 and Equity: American Public Health Association  https://www.apha.org/topics-and-issues/communicable-disease/coronavirus/equity
  2. Are Clinicians Contributing to African American COVID-19 Deaths? Michigan State University. https://www.publichealth.msu.edu/news-items/research/220-are-clinicians-contributing-to-african-american-covid-19-deaths
  3. Off the back burner: diverse and gender- inclusive decision- making for COVID-19 response and recovery. BMJ Global Health. https://gh.bmj.com/content/bmjgh/5/5/e002595.full.pdf