What We’re Reading: 07/10/20


Another week brings a fresh sweep of daily records for Covid-19 cases in the United States. Don’t let pandemic fatigue set in, we have a long, long way to go. Wear a mask, wash your hands, maintain distance, get tested, and please be kind to each other.

Before we jump to the reading, Dr. Paul Kurlansky, Associate Director of the Center for Innovation and Outcomes Research at Columbia, has a few things to get off his chest about what he calls Covid Confusion. Take the 15 minutes and give this a watch, we promise it will be both cathartic and informative:

Is Your State Doing Enough Coronavirus Testing?

Only twelve states meet the testing target considered necessary to reduce the spread of Covid-19. Our current nationwide target is 1.6 million tests per day, but we are averaging 634,000 daily. This article uses simple graphs broken down by state to great effect and can certainly help mitigate some of the confusion about testing in the media. (From nytimes.com)

America Is Refusing to Learn How to Fight the Coronavirus

After several long months of lockdown, we flattened the curve. New York has so many lessons to share about our experience, about life on the brink in our city. Lessons we didn’t learn quickly enough from the experiences in China, Italy, Spain. Yet, ICUs are now reaching capacity in Arizona, Texas, and Florida. Other states are not too far behind. Once unthinkable prospects of making impossible choices—treating only those more likely to survive—are now reality in overrun hospitals. Why does it appear our nation has already given up?  (From nymag.com)

On Racism: A New Standard For Publishing On Racial Health Inequities

Put simply, this article is a must-read for all. The authors take to task the bias, observation, and language of researchers, clinicians, and writers while presenting rigorous standards for publishing on racial health inequities. Just take this fact they present at the onset (edited to reflect search results as of 7/10): a PubMed database search today revealed as few as 89 articles that included both the word “race” and the terms “structural racism” or “institutional racism.” Of the 89 articles found, 35 were published in the past 18 months.

“In short, racism kills. Whether through force, deprivation, or discrimination, it is a fundamental cause of disease and the strange but familiar root of racial health inequities.”  (From healthaffairs.org)


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