Dr. Bonnie Henry: Contending with COVID-19 in Visible Minority Communities
Honorable Mention; DEI Global Case Writing Competition. COVID-19 had been one of the deadliest pandemics ever seen, causing nearly two million deaths and 100 million cases worldwide. With no vaccine in sight for the public until at least January 2021, Dr. Bonnie Henry, the provincial health officer of British Columbia (BC), had to steer the Canadian province through the COVID-19 pandemic. Had Dr. Henry overlooked the implications that factors such as ethnicity, language, and race had for the fight against COVID-19? Public health messaging destined for racialized and diverse communities was inherently complex, and social media had already erupted with posts from many frustrated members of visible minority communities. Dr. Henry wondered what communications strategy, if any, should be urgently set in motion to help curb the increase in COVID-19 cases. Who should the communications strategy target? What message should be delivered and through what channels? The lives of BC residents were in Dr. Henry's hands.