Former New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg is doing his part to combat the COVID-19 pandemic by donating $100 million to Black aspiring doctors.
The NY Times reported Thursday that the billionaire announced that his charitable organization, Bloomberg Philanthropies, intends to give the generous donation to medical schools at four historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) over the next four years.
In an opinion piece for CNN titled “To save Black lives, we need more Black doctors,” Bloomberg admits that one of the many reasons Black Americans are dying from COVID-19 at unreasonable rates is because of unjust health care.
“Black patients overall have better outcomes when they are treated by Black doctors. A wealth of data supports this, including a recent study that found Black newborns treated by Black physicians had higher rates of survival,” he wrote. “Currently, Black people make up about 13% of the US population but, according to the Association of American Medical Colleges, only 5% of practicing medical doctors. And while this disparity has been growing for years — especially among Black male doctors — the coronavirus threatens to make it far worse.”
His organization hopes to lessen medical students’ financial hardship by blessing 800 of them with up to $100,000 in grants. The ending goal is that the students will use their educations to give back to the health and wellness of Black neighborhoods.
In a time where health is a scary subject, one can only hope for a better future created by the people who know exactly what is needed.