New York’s state health officials say that being black or Latino can be a risk factor because of persistent social inequality
The New York State Department of Health appeared to announce this week that non-white New Yorkers would receive priority over whites in receiving “extremely limited” Covid-19 therapies for people at risk.
In a document dated December 27, the Department of Health announced that two antiviral oral therapies – Paxlovid and molnupiravir – had received emergency use authorization and would “reduce the risk of hospitalization and death by 88% and 30% respectively.”
The department stated that supplies would be “extremely limited initially”Therefore, it would be necessary to distribute the product based on how well they perform. “guidance on prioritization.”This guidance prioritizes people who have moderately to severely impaired immune systems or are at risk for serious illness. The department noted that these risks include cancer, diabetes, and other illnesses. “should be considered a risk factor, as long-standing systemic health and social inequities have contributed to an increased risk of severe illness and death from Covid-19.”
“How is the race or ethnicity of a patient a legitimate criterion for the allocation of scarce clinical resources (like drugs or hospital beds) by a government entity in 2021 in the USA? And how could this even be constitutional?” questioned Yale Professor Nicholas A. Christakis.