N.Y. Rationing COVID Drugs Based on Race

This is the N.Y. State Department of Health Dec. 27, 2021. Here’s the complete list

Glenn Greenwald explains:

That means that a healthy twenty-year-old Asian football player or a 17-year-old African-American marathon runner from a wealthy family will be automatically deemed at heightened risk to develop serious COVID illness—making them instantly eligible for monoclonal treatments upon testing positive and showing symptoms—while a White person of exactly the same age and health condition from an impoverished background would not be automatically eligible.

This policy was first flagged by New York journalist Karol Markowicz, whose Twitter summary described it as “white people need not apply.” The summary of the information is incorrect. Whites who have COVID may still qualify for treatment. Only if they demonstrate it first that they have “a medical condition that increase[s]They are at greater risk of severe illnesses.” Non-whites have the distinct advantage of not being a white person. You are automatically eligible without having to demonstrate that, since their non-white race is deemed to inherently constitute an increased risk of severe illness or death from COVID-19. New York explicitly prioritizes some races in determining eligibility to life-saving treatments.

Greenwald provides a more detailed analysis. Thanks to Hans Bader (Liberty Unyielding) for the pointer; as he points out, such use of race as a proxy for supposed greater risk—instead of focusing on the more directly relevant factors (“race-neutral alternatives,” in doctrinal terms), such as underlying medical conditions, vaccination status, lack of access to good alternative care, or the like—would violate the Equal Protection Clause in this situation.