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According to officials, CURE-19 is housed within NYC Health + Hospitals/Elmhurst’s Global Health Institute and operated in partnership with the Arnhold Institute for Global Health.
By Forum Staff
The Arnhold Institute for Global Health at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and NYC Health + Hospitals have launched the COVID-19 Unit for Research at Elmhurst (CURE-19), Mount Sinai officials recently announced.
The new initiative will translate data, experiences, and lessons from clinicians at NYC Health + Hospitals/Elmhurst and NYC Health + Hospitals/Queens into research that will address both the pandemic and root causes of health disparities in the five boroughs.
According to officials, CURE-19 is housed within NYC Health + Hospitals/Elmhurst’s Global Health Institute and operated in partnership with the Arnhold Institute for Global Health. Mount Sinai and NYC Health + Hospitals/Elmhurst have an academic affiliation agreement and joint residency programs, and previously collaborated on training, patient care and research. To date, NYC Health + Hospitals/Elmhurst has discharged more than 1,600 COVID-19 patients.
According to research officials, CURE-19 has identified three areas of urgent need in Queens to address in collaboration with leaders and experts in the borough’s communities:
Reproductive and child healthcare: COVID-19 has added considerable stressors for pregnant women, from the fear of contracting the virus to managing birth and the first weeks of care for newborns with limited social support. CURE-19 is studying a cohort of affected women and their newborns and engaging community-based organizations to collaborate in improving the care of mothers and children.
People living with HIV: People living with HIV experience both immune suppression and other social and economic vulnerabilities that put them at high risk for COVID-19. Drawing on extensive clinical and research expertise in shaping HIV-related care in settings including Kenya, Ethiopia, and Russia, CURE-19 is launching phone-based assessments, outreach, and clinical support for people with HIV in Kenya and New York City to evaluate the impact of the pandemic on adolescent and adult physical, mental and social health.
Social and environmental determinants: Social and environmental factors drive the risk of COVID-19-related illness, as well as the rise in other diseases and conditions from health care disruption during the pandemic. CURE-19 is conducting a large retrospective analysis to assess the impact of air pollution, overcrowding, excessive policing, race/ethnicity, household income, and the environment on the severity of COVID-19. The unit will follow up with long-term studies to mitigate these risks, improving greater resiliency and preparedness.
“The devastating impact of a pandemic can be significantly exacerbated by longstanding social, economic, and health inequities, an outcome we are seeing in communities across New York and the world,” said Dennis Charney, MD, dean of the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and president for Academic Affairs of the Mount Sinai Health System. “Through CURE-19, we are bringing together extensive resources, expertise, and reach of both the Mount Sinai Health System and Elmhurst Hospital in serving populations that are socioeconomically, demographically, and culturally diverse. The unit will explore how we can not only achieve greater success in combating COVID-19 in these communities, but also strengthen our efforts to address existing health disparities, leading to improved patient outcomes and enhanced pandemic preparedness and response initiatives.”