The COVID-19 pandemic has provoked fears of medical resource shortages, and as a result a variety of scarce resource allocation algorithms have been developed at the hospital, state, and national levels. The issue is that algorithms assumed to be unbiased have unintentionally perpetuated racial biases. With the significant uncertainty that continues about the potential course of the pandemic, and concerns regarding a “second surge”, it is important to evaluate the potential for these rules to propagate racial bias, and prevent this if possible.
CHAS Fellow and Associate Professor of Medicine at UChicago Medicine,
Monica Peek, MD, MPH
, William Miller, MD (UChicago Medicine) and William Parker, MD (UChicago Medicine) analyzed how scarce resource allocation scores threaten to exacerbate racial disparities in healthcare and present recommendations on fairer allocation of resources.
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