AKArama Foundation of Theta Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority will host a Covid-19 virtual townhall to discuss why African Americans are more are susceptible to infection and dying at a much higher rate from the pandemic virus than whites or other ethnic groups.
Three professionals will discuss the subject during the townhall, which will held from 2p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Saturday, June 27. WGN -TV anchor Micah Materre will moderate the discussion. You can register https://bit.ly/COVIDWhyUs. After registering, a zoom link will be provided.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infection Diseases, the nation’s leading expert on the coronvarius, noted that the ailment hits Blacks much harder than others.
Dr. Fauci told before a Congressional committee Tuesday in Washington D.C. that racism is a major reason coronavirus is higher among blacks.
U.S. Rep. Bobby Rush (D., Ill.) asked Dr. Fauci if racism is one of the factors causing a higher rate of Covid-19 infections among Blacks?
“Obviously, the African-American community has suffered from racism for a very, very long period of time,” Fauci said in response. “And I cannot imagine that that has not contributed to the conditions that they find themselves in, economically and otherwise. So the answer, Congressmen, is yes.” Fauci was testifying before the U.S. House Committee on Energy and Commerce.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has estimated that Black Americans 35 to 44 years old are 10 times more likely to die from Covid-19 (the illness caused by the coronavirus) than their white counterparts. Latinx people in the same age bracket are eight times more likely to die than whites.
Other factors that push up the coronavirus rate among Blacks are diabetes, asthma and hypertension. In addition, Blacks are employed in essential jobs, requiring them to leave home and come into face-to-face contact with others who knowingly or unknowingly may have the virus.
Overall, the U.S. leads the world in coronavirus cases with 2,268,753 million and 119, 761 deaths, according to the World Health Organization.
The professionals who have agreed to speak at the townhall are: Iyabo Obasanjo, PhD, an epidemiologist who teaches public health at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia; Icilma V. Fergus, MD, an associate professor of medicine and director of Cardiovascular Disparities at the Icahn School of Medicine, a private graduate school of medicine based in Manhattan, New York and Angela Odoms -Young, PhD, an associate professor in the Department Kinesiology and Nutrition in the College of Applied Health Sciences at University of Illinois Health.
Kimberly Egonmwan, vice president of the AKArama Foundation, said the panelists will discuss Covid-19’s affect on African Americans. The panelists also will counsel to participants on how to survive the pandemic. Those with Zoom will be able ask questions to the panelists via chat.