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May 1, 2020
Contact: HHS Press Office
[email protected]

COVID-19 Funding Available to Minority, Rural and Socially Vulnerable Communities for Linkages to Services, Information and Education

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Minority Health (OMH) announced a competitive funding opportunity to invest up to $40 million for the development and coordination of a strategic network of national, state, territorial, tribal and local organizations to deliver important COVID-19-related information to racial and ethnic minority, rural and socially vulnerable communities hardest hit by the pandemic. The information network will strengthen efforts to link communities to COVID-19 testing, healthcare and social services and to best share and implement effective response, recovery and resilience strategies.

“President Trump recognizes that minority, rural, and socially vulnerable communities have been hit especially hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, and this funding opportunity will help empower these communities with tools they need to fight back and stay healthy,” said HHS Secretary Alex Azar. “Especially in communities with preexisting health challenges or difficulties in accessing care, we need to support approaches tailored to the unique needs of a given community, and that’s what this Office of Minority Health initiative will do.”

“The vulnerable populations in many underserved communities are among the highest risk of suffering devastating health and economic impacts of COVID-19,” said Assistant Secretary for Health ADM Brett P. Giroir, M.D. “This initiative will build upon our existing response, partnering federal, state, local, and tribal governments with the private sector to address the unique needs of these communities and individuals.”

The three-year initiative will include the development and coordination of a strategic and structured network of national, state, territorial, and local public and community based organizations that will help mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on racial and ethnic minority communities across the nation. The initiative also includes a national multi-media outreach and education effort.  One of the primary goals of these information dissemination efforts is to provide additional education and community-level information on resources to help fight the pandemic to those who need it most.

“The strength of our response to COVID-19 lies within our communities,” said Deputy Assistant Secretary for Minority Health, RADM Felicia Collins, M.D. “This initiative will work with community-based organizations to connect racial and ethnic minority, rural and vulnerable populations to information and important services.”

Applications are due by 6:00 PM Eastern Time on Monday, May 11. Technical assistance will be provided to those who are interested in applying for this cooperative agreement.

The Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health (OASH), a division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, provides public health and science advice to the Secretary, and oversees the Department’s broad-ranging public health offices, whose missions include minority health, HIV policy, women’s health, disease prevention, human research protections and others. OASH also includes the Office of the Surgeon General and the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps.

The Office of Minority Health is dedicated to improving the health of racial and ethnic minority populations through the development of health policies and programs that will help eliminate health disparities.

For more information about the Office of Minority Health visit: www.minorityhealth.hhs.gov/


Follow the Assistant Secretary for Health on Twitter @HHS_ASH and the Office of Minority Health @MinorityHealth, and sign up for HHS Email Updates

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Last revised: May 1, 2020

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