Beatty Backed Bill Boosts Central Ohio COVID-19 Testing Efforts
COLUMBUS, OH—U.S. Congresswoman Joyce Beatty (OH-03) announced today that the National Institutes of Health (NIH) awarded $5 million to The Ohio State University to improve COVID-19 testing disparities among underserved and vulnerable populations. Funding was made available through the Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act, P.L. 116-139, a law Beatty helped pass in the U.S. House of Representatives.
“The COVID-19 Pandemic has impacted the lives of all Americans, but the sad fact is that it has been especially devastating on communities color,” Beatty said. “Right now, in State of Ohio, Black Americans represent nearly 20 percent of all COVID-19 cases and 18 percent of all deaths, yet account for 13 percent of the state’s population. Unfortunately, these sobering statistics mirror those in almost every other state, not to mention nationally.” She added, “I believe the federal government has an obligation to protect the health and safety of everyone, and according to medical experts that begins with expanding testing. As the Representative of Ohio’s Third Congressional District, I am committed to doing just that, and working hard to increase access so that anyone who needs a test can get one.”
Ohio State is one of 32 institutions to receive NIH Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics (RADx) funds to help pay for projects designed to rapidly implement COVID-19 testing. The RADx Underserved Populations (RADx-UP) program supports research that aims to better understand COVID-19 testing patterns among people of color and vulnerable populations; strengthen the data on disparities in infection rates, disease progression and outcomes; and develop strategies to reduce the disparities in COVID-19 testing, treatment, and contact tracing.
To date, Ohio’s Third Congressional District has received more than $487 million in COVID-19-related federal funds.