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Why Declaring Racism as a Public Health Emergency Matters

Individual and systemic racism affects virtually every aspect of public life. It is especially pervasive in medicine and public health. The U.S. Congress and several local and state governments have declared racism a public health crisis. Understanding why racism is a public health emergency can shed light on the health-related harms of racism and bigotry. It also stimulates efforts to remedy the injustices and improve the general health of all Americans. On a systemic level, racism denigrates the overall health of the United States and puts undue burdens on the healthcare system. Research shows that ethnic minority groups in the U.S. disproportionately suffer more from asthma, diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, obesity, and other chronic conditions. Learn more from NPHIC here about why racism as a public health emergency matters.

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