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New Castle County puts $10 million to helping people get health care

The grants will be available to organizations providing resources or services that decrease healthcare inequities caused by the coronavirus.

New Castle County is putting $10 million toward helping ensure health equity by funding organizations that help people get the care they need.

Inequities occur when there are obvious differences in outcomes for some groups of people. That may mean those groups don’t have the money for care and medicines, don’t have access to care because it’s not near them and they don’t have transportation, or may be from racial or other injustice.

The program money will come from the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, said Matt Meyer, New Castle County executive.

The funds will be available to organizations who provide resources or services to the public to decrease healthcare inequities caused by the novel coronavirus pandemic.

Funding must be directly tied to COVID-19 related expenses.

“There have been health inequities for generations, and COVID-19 has exacerbated those inequities, particularly in communities of color,” Meyer said in a press release. “These funds will be used on immediate and urgent needs, as well as to address the root causes of unequal health outcomes in our communities.”

The idea of health equities rose to prominence again earlier this year when many studies said that more minorities were dying from the novel coronavirus than whites. As communities studied what to do and how to spend the federal money, many people suggesting helping with medical needs, including the Delaware Pandemic Resurgence Committee and the New Castle County’s CARES Act Task Force.

The new program is a result of the New Castle Promote Health Equity Committee. Its 17 members included  Jordan M. Hines, who had written an opinion piece calling for state government to establish a new task force to address public health disparities in Black and Latino communities.  Meyer read the article and called Hines to discuss how the county could help.

“I was so grateful,” Hines said in a county press release. He praised Meyer’s leadership.

Non-profit groups, organizations and small businesses addressing health equity issues in New Castle County can complete a grant application and submit a proposal to receive funding to continue or expand efforts to address health disparities in vulnerable communities disproportionately impacted by COVID-19.

The funds will be available through a competitive grant process starting on Monday, Aug. 24. After organizations apply, they will be scored by the Promote Health Equity Committee and notified of their grant amount. 

Organizations interested in applying should go to https://www.nccde.org/2036/CARES-Act.

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