Virginia has been awarded a total of $30.6 million from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to address the health inequities created, and uncovered, by the COVID-19 pandemic.
A Virginia Department of Health spokeswoman told WTOP the money will be used for a variety of priorities to help rectify health inequities among people at higher risk, including minority groups and people in rural communities.
Some of the priorities include: outreach about facts regarding testing, contact tracing and vaccination; maintenance and further development of the Equity at a Glance and Equity in Action dashboards; more personnel and training in the state’s local health districts, and mini grants targeted toward rural localities.
The two-year grant gives $27.3 million to the state; another $3.3 million will go straight to the Virginia Beach Department of Public Health.
“We know COVID-19 has had an uneven impact on communities,” said State Health Commissioner Dr. M. Norman Oliver in a statement. “Throughout this pandemic we have worked hard to apply resources evenly and equitably. These additional funds are allowing us to enhance those efforts, particularly in those areas where disparities in COVID-19 testing, cases and deaths, and vaccination rates continue to exist.”
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