New York state has stated that it will prioritize non-White people during their distribution of treatments for COVID-19 that are in short supply.
A document released by the state’s Department of Health details its treatment distribution plans, including monoclonal antibody treatments and antiviral pills.
The document contains a section discussing the eligibility for getting the scarce antiviral medicine that people need to meet so that they can get treatment. It also includes a line stating that an individual must have “a medical condition or other factors that increase their risk for severe illness.”
Being a race or ethnicity other than White is one such “risk factor,” because of the “longstanding systemic health and social inequities.”
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The memo says: “Non-white race or Hispanic/Latino ethnicity should be considered a risk factor, as longstanding systemic health and social inequities have contributed to an increased risk of severe illness and death from COVID-19.”
Many people online slammed New York’s plan for discriminating against people based on their ethnicity and skin color.
According to state Health Department spokesperson Erin Silk, as reported by Fox News, New York’s “prioritization guidance comes directly from the CDC.” He also said that neither “race nor ethnicity would disqualify an individual from receiving treatment.”
“Systemic poverty, which has clearly proven to be a risk factor in populations in New York State and nationwide, is added to the algorithm of prioritization similar to all other risk factors. It is merely mentioned as a factor that increases risk,” she added.
This plan to distribute COVID-19 related medical treatments in New York comes as the state is currently experiencing a record number of cases.
Apart from this, the protests that happened on Monday against NYC’s vaccine mandate resulted in the police making five arrests at a protest in a Burger King branch.
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