PDA welcome three new inquiries into the unequal impact of COVID-19

Yesterday, the Women and Equalities Committee launched three new inquiries to investigate the unequal impact of the coronavirus.

Thu 11th June 2020 The PDA

The three areas of inquiry are:

  • Coronavirus and BAME people
  • Coronavirus, disability and access to services
  • Coronavirus and the gendered economic impact

The PDA welcome the inquiries into these areas and recognise the issues faced by our members. These areas are of particular interest to the PDA’s Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Networks. In particular, the Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic Pharmacists’ Network (BAME Network), the Disabled Pharmacists’ Network (Ability Network) and the National Association of Women Pharmacists (NAWP).

Regarding the coronavirus and BAME people, Alima Batchelor, PDA Head of Policy, said: “The PDA is pleased that the Women and Equalities parliamentary committee is launching a sub inquiry into coronavirus and BAME people as part of its overall ‘Unequal impact? Coronavirus and the impact on people with protected characteristics’ inquiry. We are encouraged to read that the inquiry will look at all potential factors including pre-existing inequalities which face BAME people and look forward to seeing the results.”

In terms of the coronavirus on disability and access to services, Richard Hutton, PDA Union Regional Official for the North, and Ability Network Coordinator said: “PDA disabled members have experienced isolation and difficulty in accessing usual services as well as in obtaining bespoke PPE. Those on medication particularly of an immunosuppressant nature are obviously more vulnerable.”

In relation to the coronavirus and the gendered economic impact, Daniela Rusalim, PDA Union Representative for the East of England Region and a National Association of Women Pharmacists (NAWP) member, said “The global coronavirus pandemic is impacting women in all sectors, healthcare particularly, and this is intensifying the existing inequalities. The health workforce is predominantly represented by women and they are stringently needed to serve on the frontlines whilst also caring for children and supporting elderly family members. Furthermore, the existing gender leadership imbalance has the potential to inadvertently deepen the inequality due to women’s lack of level representation in response planning and decision making.”

We look forward to news of the outcomes of these inquiries and encourage pharmacists (PDA members and non-members) to join our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Networks.

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