Google Awards $1 Million Grant to Satcher Health Leadership Institute at Morehouse School of Medicine to Study Racial Impact of COVID-19
This partnership will enable the real-time COVID-19 collection and study of detailed demographic data about the communities of color that are being hit hardest by the pandemic.
Atlanta, GA—May 28, 2020—The COVID-19 outbreak is having a disproportionate impact on communities of color, raising urgent questions about why that’s happening—and about what can be done to reduce risk and harm for people of color. A new $1 million grant from Google.org will help the Satcher Health Leadership Institute at Morehouse School of Medicine answer those questions by collecting and analyzing detailed data that can get to the root causes of why communities of color have been so disproportionately harmed by COVID-19.
The new partnership between Google.org and the Satcher Health Institute at Morehouse School of Medicine will also include a team of Google engineers and data scientists who will work full-time over the next six months to support the project.
The ongoing research will build a database with a detailed breakdown of the virus’s impact by race, ethnicity, gender, socioeconomic status and other critical factors. The data, in turn, will help policymakers better understand how to ensure those communities receive the targeted help that they need to close those racial gaps and ensure the communities receive the resources and support that they need to battle the virus.
By looking at the social and political determinants of COVID-19 outcomes, we can inform resource allocation and management, jurisdictions’ response and mitigation strategies, testing, contact tracing, and overall implications for health equity for vulnerable populations.”
Daniel E. Dawes, JD
This project will map data on the trajectory of COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and deaths across the United States, including its territories, and better understand and address entrenched health inequities in disproportionately impacted communities
“Never before in the midst of a pandemic have we been able to realize an equitable policy. In creating a comprehensive, interactive, public-facing COVID-19 Health Equity Map of the United States, this partnership goes beyond showing disparate impact of the virus,” said Daniel E. Dawes, JD, SHLI director and principal investigator of this grant award. “By looking at the social and political determinants of COVID-19 outcomes, we can inform resource allocation and management, jurisdictions’ response and mitigation strategies, testing, contact tracing, and overall implications for health equity for vulnerable populations.”
"Communities of color, specifically Black, Latinx, Native, and Asian and Pacific Islander communities, have borne the brunt of the death toll for COVID-19, even as many people of color disproportionately serve our nation as essential workers,” said Jacquelline Fuller, president of Google.org. “We are grateful to respond to this tragedy by investing a $1 million grant and a team of Google.org Fellows who will work full-time over the next six months to support the critical work the Morehouse School of Medicine is doing to map health equity across the country and to provide data-driven resources to jurisdictions seeking to incorporate health equity into their policy response to the COVID-19 pandemic."
“Disaggregated data changed the fight for black maternal health by showing that black women are far more likely to die no matter income, education level or insurance status. Data shows the root causes of staggering disparities and allows us to advocate for what we really need to save lives” said Dr. Joia Crear-Perry, Founder and President of the National Birth Equity Collaborative.
About The Satcher Health Leadership Institute
The Satcher Health Leadership Institute (SHLI) aims to be the leading transformational force for health equity in policy, leadership development, and research. Rooted in the legacy of our founder, the 16th U.S. Surgeon General, Dr. David Satcher, SHLI’s mission is to create systemic change at the intersection of policy and equity by focusing on three priority areas: the political determinants of health, health system transformation, and mental and behavioral health. In conjunction with key strategic partners, SHLI enhances leadership among diverse learners, conducts forward-thinking research on the drivers of health inequities, and advances evidence-based policies; all in an effort to contribute to the achievement of health equity for all population groups. Learn more at https://satcherinstitute.org and https://healthequitynetwork.org.
About Morehouse School of Medicine
Morehouse School of Medicine, located in Atlanta, GA, exists to improve the health and well-being of individuals and communities; increase the diversity of the health professional and scientific workforce; and address primary health care through programs in education, research, and service, with emphasis on people of color and the underserved urban and rural populations in Georgia, the nation, and the world. MSM is among the nation's leading educators of primary care physicians and has twice been recognized as the top institution among U.S. medical schools for its dedication to the social mission of education. The faculty and alumni are noted in their fields for excellence in teaching, research, and public policy, and are known in the community for exceptional, culturally appropriate patient care. Morehouse School of Medicine is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award doctorate and master’s degrees.
Google's philanthropy supports nonprofits that address humanitarian issues and apply scalable, data-driven innovation to solving the world's biggest challenges. We accelerate their progress by connecting them with a unique blend of support that includes funding, products, and technical expertise from Google volunteers. We engage with these believers-turned-doers who make a significant impact on the communities they represent, and whose work has the potential to produce meaningful change. We want a world that works for everyone—and we believe technology and innovation can move the needle.