Since the arrival of the Coronavirus pandemic, communities of color have been drastically affected by the virus. In response to the “staggering” effect, Michael Bloomberg announced he will donate money to historically Black medical schools to aid in the development and the expansion of Black doctors.
“The data is clear: Black patients over all have better outcomes when they get treatment from Black doctors,” Bloomberg told The New York Times. “By increasing the number of Black doctors, we hope the gift will help to save more Black lives and reduce the health problems that limit economic opportunity in Black communities.”
The former presidential candidate also discussed the effects of COVID-19 on the Black community in a CNN op-ed, noting a report cited that Black people are “nearly three times more likely than white people to contract the virus, and twice as likely to die from it.”
Ultimately, he emphasized the need for more Black doctors.
“The pandemic has underscored just how urgent the need for more Black doctors is, and we can’t afford to wait for the economy to recover to increase support for the universities that most effectively enroll and graduate them,” he said. “More Black doctors will mean more Black lives saved and less debilitating health conditions that limit economic opportunity in Black communities.”
As part of Bloomberg’s racial justice program the Greenwood Initiave, he will give $100 million in scholarships to Charles R. Drew University of Science and Medicine in Los Angeles, Howard University College of Medicine in Washington, D.C., Nashville’s Meharry Medical College and Atlanta’s Morehouse School of Medicine.
Bloomberg reportedly reached out to college and university officials last month to discuss ways he could help improve intergenerational wealth in the Black community. Rather than offer any of his own suggestions, he listened and eventually took the advice of Howard University President Dr. Wayne Frederick who suggested he focus on increasing the number of existing Black doctors.