CBC Members participated in an informative discussion with Dr. Francis Collins,
Director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and other NIH directors on
health disparities impacting communities of color.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) Joyce Beatty and Members of the CBC hosted an informative virtual discussion with Dr. Francis Collins, Director of the National Institutes of Health, and other NIH directors. Members were briefed on health disparity research in President Biden’s FY2022 Budget request and the health disparities exposed during the COVID-19 pandemic.
In addition to Dr. Collins, the briefing with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) also included Dr. Gary Gibbons, Director of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI); Dr. Eliseo Pérez-Stable, Director of the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD); and Dr. Shannon Zenk, Director of the National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR).
CBC Chair Joyce Beatty offered the following quote: “We’ve all seen the various ways that the pandemic has exposed the health disparities present in this country due to instances of systemic racism. Through our various initiatives like Get Out the Vaccine (GOTV) and the Vaccine Week of Action, the CBC has been instrumental in pushing for vaccine access within our districts. Especially where it addresses the communities that need it most, Black Americans who were once reluctant about getting the vaccine or had questions about distribution near their home or work. The CBC had several conversations with NIH officials during the pandemic, and we are committed to continuing those efforts.”
The COVID-19 pandemic has devastated the quality of life of the most vulnerable populations. Many American lives have been lost, families shaken, businesses destroyed, and the rural and farming communities have lost tremendous resources; the time is now to restore what was broken. President Biden’s FY2022 Budget request includes investment in public health infrastructure, community mental health services, child welfare competitive grants, and funding for rural healthcare providers.