DearColleague.us

Letter

Sending Office: Honorable Robin L. Kelly
Sent By:
Evan.Mitchell@mail.house.gov

        Request for Cosponsor(s)

BECOME AN ORIGINAL COSPONSOR OF THE EQUITABLE DATA COLLECTION AND

DISCLOSURE ON COVID-19 ACT

Dear Colleague:

 

Please join us as an original co-sponsor of the Equitable Data Collection and Disclosure on COVID-19 Act that mandates the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to collect the data on and publicly  report racial and ethnic demographic information
related to COVID-19 testing, hospitalizations, and mortality.

 

Currently, the CDC is not regularly collecting and reporting data on the racial and ethnic demographics of persons tested and treated for COVID-19. In the last week since Congressional lawmakers called on Health and Human Services to collect and publicly
release racial data, nine states have stepped up to fill the gap. Today, at least eleven states have begun releasing preliminary racial data, including Connecticut, Illinois, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, North Carolina, South Carolina,
Virginia and Washington, D.C. These data overwhelmingly show a severe over-representation of COVID-19 cases among low-income communities and people of color. For example, in Milwaukee County, Wisconsin, African Americans account for 25% of the population,
yet make up over half of the coronavirus cases and 80% of deaths¹. This is not an anomaly. This preliminary data depicts strong racial disparities in COVID-19 outcomes that are likely occurring nationwide.

 

It is crucial for Health and Human Services to collect comprehensive data on race, ethnicity and other demographics and publicly release it so that it can better inform how the nation responds to this pandemic.

 

Specifically, the Equitable Data Collection and Disclosure on COVID-19 Act would:

 

  • Provide emergency funding to HHS for data collection on the racial and ethnic disparities of COVID-19.
  • Require the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to publicly release data on COVID-19 testing, hospitalization, and mortality, disaggregated by race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and other relevant
    demographics.
  • Establish a commission on ensuring health equity during the COVID-19 public health emergency.
  • Submit a report to Congress and the American public on COVID-19 mortality and morbidity.

 

While COVID-19 doesn’t discriminate, a legacy of racism and income inequality have made low-income communities and people of color especially vulnerable to the most severe consequences of the disease. Without dedicated, publicly available national data,
we will not be able to effectively respond to the pandemic’s impact on the most vulnerable communities among us. It is crucial to our efforts to combat this crisis that we both collect and make public racial and demographic data on COVID-19.

 

We hope that you will join us as an original co-sponsor on this bill. If you have any questions, please reach out to Evan Mitchell (evan.mitchell@mail.house.gov) in Rep. Kelly’s office or Lynese Wallace (lynese.wallace@mail.house.gov) in Rep.
Pressley’s office.

 

To become an original co-sponsor of this bill, please fill out this
form by COB April 10th. 

 

Sincerely,

 

 

Robin L. Kelly                                                                                                                     Ayanna Pressley

Member of Congress                                                                                                      Member of Congress

 

Karen Bass                                                                                                                          Barbara Lee

Member of Congress                                                                                                      Member of Congress

 

 

 

Related Legislative Issues

Selected legislative information: Civil Rights, HealthCare, Science

icon eDC logo e-Dear Colleague version 2.0
 
e-Dear Colleagues are intended for internal House use only.