By Jacqueline Pitts, The Bottom Line
FRANKFORT, Ky. — A letter was sent to the Beshear administration Thursday advocating for research into the coronavirus and its impacts on Kentucky’s health, economy and overall well-being in order to be more prepared and informed for a possible resurgence.
The letter was sent by the University of Louisville President Dr. Neeli Bendapudi, University of Kentucky President Dr. Eli Capilouto, Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky President and CEO Ben Chandler and Kentucky Chamber President and CEO Ashli Watts.
While the letter applauds the state’s appropriate response to the coronavirus, the group says additional research would allow policy and health leaders to make fact-based decisions on how to protect the health and wellbeing of Kentuckians.
“As the state and nation have turned to science for factual information about the coronavirus and its health effects, we have an opportunity to use scientific and medical research to gauge the anticipated health, social, and economic impact of a resurgence. This research will prove invaluable to informing decisions about areas of work, shop, play, care, and learning where individuals are the most vulnerable to contracting the virus. It will also give us more specific information about those at high risk of serious illness if exposed, which leads logically to more targeted public health policies,” the letter said.
Research is already underway in Jefferson County with the Co-Immunity Project, which is combining health and economic research to provide policy recommendations to better protect and prepare Kentucky against the coronavirus. The letter suggests the Co-Immunity Project be expanded statewide to allow Kentucky to better protect its vulnerable citizens in a less costly manner.