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Journal Article


Sholas MG. J. Pediatr. Rehabil. Med. 2020; ePub(ePub): ePub.


(Copyright © 2020, IOS Press)






The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant health impact around the world. In the United States, there has been a difference in infection and death rates for Black Americans and other marginalized groups as compared to White Americans. Although children do not seem to be suffering infection, morbidity and mortality to the same degree as adults, there is concern that COVID-19 could have a disparate impact on children with acquired or congenital disabilities when analyzed through the lens of race and equity. The possibility that there could be a differential effect on rehabilitation services relates to: the risk of familial/parental exposure leading to secondary infection, the negative economic impact of public health measures required to control disease spread, and the pre-existing social factors that impact access to healthcare. Finally, the psychosocial stresses imposed by COVID-19 inflame risk factors for non-accidental injury, which could lead to an increased need for pediatric rehabilitation services in vulnerable populations. It is critical that individual providers, as well as the health systems in which they practice, actively focus on mitigating personal and systemic causes of racial and ethnic health outcome disparities. These efforts need to move beyond a race neutral construct to specifically anti-racist activity.

Language: en


disability; rehabilitation; COVID-19; Health disparities; pediatrics; Black children; coronavirus; equity; function; Latino children; marginalized population; Native American children


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