Commitment to Addressing Health Care Disparities During COVID-19

The American Association of Nurse Practitioners® (AANP) is uniquely positioned to meet the health care demands of the nation during the COVID-19 pandemic. As a professional home for nurse practitioners (NPs), AANP is committed to empowering all NPs to advance high-quality, equitable care, while addressing health care disparities through practice, education, advocacy, research and leadership (PEARL).

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted long-standing vulnerabilities in the social and structural fabric of the American economic system, which has disadvantaged citizens of color and members of marginalized populations for centuries. The articulation of the health disparities associated with COVID-19 and the promise to do better, without a well-defined action plan, is simply inadequate and unacceptable in a civilized society.

Through PEARL, AANP will address the systemic causes of health disparities among vulnerable populations and encompass a holistic approach to address the issues in marginalized communities. As NPs, we have an intricate knowledge of the intersection of social determinants of health and health care outcomes.

Our commitment to humanity is as evident today as it was to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., in 1967 when he stated, “It really boils down to this: that all life is interrelated. We are all caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied into a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one destiny, affects all indirectly.”

© American Association of Nurse Practitioners, 2020

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