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Tennessee Department Of Health To Address Covid-19 Health Disparities


 
Kimberly Lamar, PhD

The Tennessee Department of Health announced receipt of a $38.8 million award from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to address COVID-19 health disparities. The two-year, non-research grant is funded through the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act.

"We know COVID-19 has disproportionately impacted communities of color and vulnerable populations in Tennessee," said Kimberly Lamar, PhD, assistant commissioner, Division of Health Disparities Elimination. "We are appreciative of this award and believe it will be a great investment for Tennesseans as we continue our work to address health inequities. The funding will be used to implement a coordinated and holistic approach that builds on culturally, linguistically, and locally tailored strategies and best practices to reduce COVID-19 risk across the state of Tennessee."

The National Initiative to Address COVID-19 Health Disparities Among Populations at High-Risk and Underserved, Including Racial and Ethnic Minority Populations and Rural Communities is groundbreaking funding which represents the CDC's largest investment to date focusing specifically on reducing health disparities related to COVID-19 and will provide much needed support to directly address the issues in communities that need it most.

The intended outcomes are to

• Reduce COVID-19-related health disparities.
• Improve and increase testing and contact tracing among populations at higher risk and that are underserved, including racial and ethnic minority groups and people living in rural communities.
• Improve state, local, US territorial and freely associated state health department capacity and services to prevent and control COVID-19 infection (or transmission) among populations at higher risk and that are underserved, including racial and ethnic minority groups and people living in rural communities.

The Division of Health Disparities Elimination consists of the Office of Minority Health, Office of Rural Health Access, Office of Faith-Based and Community Engagement and the Tennessee Health Disparity Task Force. Learn more: https://www.tn.gov/content/tn/health/health-program-areas/division-of-health-disparities-elimination-.html

The mission of the Tennessee Department of Health is to protect, promote and improve the health and prosperity of people in Tennessee. Learn more about TDH services and programs at www.tn.gov/health.

 
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