Payers Partner With Communities of Color to Battle Racism

COVID-19 has disproportionately infected and killed people of color, causing many health care leaders to renew their focus on racism’s role in social determinants of health (SDOH). Since George Floyd was killed by Minneapolis police and Black Lives Matter protests took over America’s streets, the conversation about racism in health care has become even more urgent. Experts and policymakers say payers can help battle racism and SDOH by partnering with organizations rooted in communities of color — and improve insurance business outcomes by doing so.

In a June 22 meeting of the House Committee on Education and Labor about the pandemic’s impact on education, health care and the workforce, Rep. Lauren Underwood (D-Ill.) observed that COVID-19’s brutal impact on Black communities is “glaring, but not surprising.” Underwood is a nurse with a master’s degree in public health who worked on Affordable Care Act (ACA) implementation at HHS and taught at Georgetown University before being elected to Congress.

© 2021 MMIT

Peter Johnson

Peter has been a reporter for nearly a decade. Before joining AIS Health, Peter covered a wide variety of topics in his hometown of Seattle, where he continues to live. Peter’s work has appeared in publications including The Atlantic and The Stranger. Peter attended Colby College.

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