The Health Equity Council aims to overcome disparities and inequities in Michigan.

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LANSING, Mich. (WILX) – Ingham County is looking for people to serve on the new Council on Health Equity. The Council will address gaps and inequities in health care and other disparities in relation to COVID-19.

According to health experts, the COVID-19 pandemic has created barriers to prevention and resources for people of color. The Health Equity Council is here to fix that problem.

Related: Michigan develops vaccine for new covid-19 variant

of Capital Area Health Alliance and the Ingham County Health Department Received a $400,000 grant to build a council to investigate why people of color are disproportionately affected by Covid-19.

“When we see these inequities in these health outcomes, it’s not genetics. Health is born from what we call social determinants – or root causes. And those social health issues are based on things like low income, food insecurity, access to primary care and those things like racism,” said Ingham County Health Officer Linda Vail.

The Health Equity Council focuses on the barriers that black and brown people face when it comes to disease reduction and transmission.

“So bringing in the voice of the community and community organizations is really about building confidence in efforts with populations that are at high risk of adverse health outcomes,” he said.

Members of the Health Equity Council identify issues such as infant and maternal mortality, diabetes and hypertension. Once key issues are identified, strategies are developed.

“If we don’t close these gaps, we’re not going to get anywhere as a society, as a country, in terms of being a nation that provides good health care,” Vail said.

The Health Equity Council will meet once or twice a month until May 2023.

To apply – contact Dana Watson at dwatson@ingham.org or 517-512-3074. The Health Equity Council seeks three individual-members who are compensated financially.

Grant funding is provided by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Equity and Minority Health in partnership with the Public Health Institute of Michigan.

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