POLI 330N Week 1 Assignment: Current Event – Local Issue

POLI 330N Week 1 Assignment: Current Event - Local Issue

Health Disparities in New York City

The article I chose talks about the health care disparities that are long standing in New York City between Black and Hispanic people compared to the rest of the population.  Minorities have been underdiagnosed, misdiagnosed, and mistreated.  This issue has been happening long before the pandemic but has come back to the fore front due to the mistreatment during COVID and now the misdistribution of the COVID vaccine. “While Black and Hispanic New Yorkers have died at nearly twice the rate of white and Asian people, the city’s vaccination efforts have left many people of color behind”  (Shahrigian, 2021). There were limited numbers of vaccines avaible in certain area where the population is predomentaly minorities.  There were long lines of people waiting for the vaccine that stood on line for hours only to be told there were no more available.  These are the same people who are dying from the virus at the highest rate.

The article also discusses promises made by the President’s, Governor and Mayor of New York.  Everyone is promising more supplies to be supplied to areas of need but there is still issues with the community being able to receive their vaccine.  Either they are not aware if they fall under the category of those who are eligible or they are not sure of when and where to get it.  I work for in the cith hospital system and we have many people just wandering around trying to find out if they can get the vaccine.  People wait for hours and its usually a lot of yelling and screaming form they community as to why they are not alerted to when the vaccines are out.  I understand their frustrations because they do deserve the consideration of being told not to wait on the lines because there will not be any left when its their turn, but we are still trying to coordinate a better system for distributing the vaccinations.

“Millions of New Yorkers rely on Health + Hospitals and our safety-net hospitals for care — and most of them are people of color” (Shahrigian, 2021).  There should have been a higher concentraition of vaccines sent to these facilities.  We were hit the hardest and they want to cut back the budget to an already failing system.  I do not think this is a neutal article nor should it be.  It takes a look at the real issues by showing that the population that is getting hit the hardest is having the least amount of supplies and as with other medical issues misdiagnosis or underdiagnosis so they are having delayed medical treatments.   The writer definitely agrees that there is a gap in health care for minorities.  And like everytime there is an election around or some sort of issue happening the politicians make promises that we rarely see.

They are trying to get more vaccines out but at the same time they want to cut the city hospitals budget.  This would effect the underinsured and uninsured who would like to get vaccinated.  They say the vaccines are free but some people are going into the pharmacies and urgent care centers and being asked for insurance information.  This vaccine should be free to all low/moderate income.

 I know this pandemic came in fast and furious, so I understand the holes and gaps in understanding what needs to be done.  It has been a year and othe countries were able to get a better handle on the situation before the vaccines were even introduced.  New York City, although our numbers are significantly down, still has spikes in certain areas.  Despite the gaps in vaccinations and the number of existing COVID + people, they are still opening up the city which may be too soon,  Its getting wamer and people are attending crowded events without their masks with a false sense of security that the pandemic is on its last leg.

I would deal with the issue of minorities not receiving optimum care as the most important task to handle.  The vaccine shortage is important but they need to deal with those currently suffering from COVID and those who have health issues that makes them predisposed to the virus.  Just handing out the vaccine will not eradicate the problem if we don’t treat the issue at the core.  Meaning I would ensure the community still has the supplies they needs to keep healthy and I would have more mobile testing and education spots that hands out supplies like mask, hand sanitzers, and examinations for those who are exhibiting symptoms instead of them going straight to the hospitals.  A lot of people are scared to go to the hospital because they think they are automatically going to be put on a ventilator to die.  They feel that they are not properly cared for in their community.  Many travel into more affluent communities hoping that they will be treated better.  Sadly this is not the case.  Minorites are treated the same across the city.  This is why city hospitals (HHC) should be one of the top priorities receiving more funding indtead of being on the defunding list.  Healthcare is a priority and not a choice.  We have to take care of our community. As a black nurse I see first hand the mistreatment and I am vocal and advocate for my patient because they can very well be my family member.  And as an RN who has been dealing with the heavy patient load during this pandemic, I can see the mistreatment.  So one way I help contribute to the solution is by working in the community I live in to help my neighborhood thrive.

POLI 330N Week 1 Assignment: Current Event – Local Issue

References

Shahrigian, S. (n.d.). NYC mayoral wannabes grapple with health disparities for New 

Yorkers of color. Retrieved March 14, 2021, from nydailynews.com website: https://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/new-york-elections-government/ny-nyc-mayoral-candidates-city-health-issues-20210308-i355txbbl5e4hjefcrbbcvp5w4-story.html

Whitman Cobb, W. N. (2020). Political science today (1st ed.). Washington, DC: Sage, CQ 

Press.