In a world overrun by a pandemic, everyone shares a common enemy. In the battle, not everyone shares a common defense.
As we fight COVID-19, we've learned the best defense against infection includes hand washing, social distancing, wearing masks, and staying home when necessary. We now acknowledge these four simple efforts to combat COVID often prove to be luxuries: a stable home with hot water, space to comfortably distance, a clean mask each day, the opportunity to work from home. These are the same areas where many of our patients come up short. The same neighbors who wrestle with so many health disparities are, not surprisingly, the group hit hardest by the pandemic.
As the vaccine rolls out, once again the system is discriminating against the vulnerable and as a country, we have to do better. I reflected on this challenge in my Op Ed published earlier this week. However, we cannot wait for the system to change. We must make the changes happen locally, to help our neighbors now.
I am proud to say the staff at Fair Haven Community Health Care has risen to the challenge of making sure our patients have the best chance to stay healthy. From delivering food to COVID-positive patients and helping thwart eviction notices, to connecting patients with donated telehealth devices and assisting eligible patients register for their vaccine appointments, we are empowering patients to create a healthier life.
While the pandemic will still be with us in 2021, we are hopeful the advent of a new year will mean greater access to the vaccine for all. And at FHCHC, we will still be advocating for our patients, making sure that they have access to the best health care and that they are never left behind.