Friday, October 30, 2020
Shainoor Ismail, Matthew Tunis, Linlu Zhao, Caroline Quach, Navigating Inequities: A Roadmap out of the Pandemic, SSRN:
The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed social inequities that rival biological inequities in disease exposure and severity. Merely identifying some inequities without understanding all of them can lead to harmful misrepresentations and deepening disparities. In order to be effective, public health actions in a pluralistic society cannot ignore diversity in disparities. We present the first validated equity framework applied to COVID-19 that sheds light on the full spectrum of health inequities, navigates their sources and intersections, and directs ethically just interventions. The Equity Matrix also provides a comprehensive map to guide surveillance and research in order to unveil epidemiological uncertainties of novel diseases like COVID-19. In the race to a COVID-19 vaccine, this urgently needed roadmap can steer global leadership towards equitable allocation with diverse strategies for diverse inequities. Such a roadmap has been absent from discussions on managing the COVID-19 pandemic, and is critical for our passage out of it.