Press Releases

December 19, 2023

National Minority Quality Forum Announces Published Results of Baseline Minority & Rural Coronavirus Insights Study in Population Health Management

Study finds that despite past headlines, COVID-19 infection rates are higher amongst people of color.

WASHINGTON, D.C. (December  19, 2023) — The National Minority Quality Forum, a nonprofit research and advocacy organization dedicated to ensuring that minoritized populations receive optimal healthcare, Center for Clinical and Social Research (CCSR) shared that the Baseline Report for the Minority & Rural Coronavirus Insights Study (MRCIS) was published in Population Health Management. MRCIS is a five-year longitudinal study on the effects of coronavirus with a particular focus on the impact of the virus in minority and rural communities.

MRCIS was launched at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. Five Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) located in Florida, California, Illinois, Ohio and Louisiana were selected as participating sites. Study participants completed a baseline survey, and received a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and antibody test to confirm COVID-19 infection status, as well as other laboratory tests at no cost to participants. Blood samples were shipped and stored at a biobank which will allow for future investigations. 

A total of 3,238 participants were enrolled in this study, making it the largest multi-site, community-based epidemiologic investigation of the social and structural determinants of health,  clinical, environmental and genetic factors associated with the COVID-19 pandemic in minority and rural communities in the United States.

Key Takeaways in the Baseline Report

  • Rates of COVID-19 infections were higher amongst people of color
  • Minorities has 2x increased odds of contracting COVID-19 compared to non-Hispanic white people
  • As household size increased, the odds of getting COVID-19 also increased

The CCSR team will continue to use the stored blood samples to conduct future studies that will examine differences in COVID-19 experiences among minoritized communities. These future studies include:

  • Comparison of the racial and ethnic differences in vitamin D levels and COVID-19 infections in study participants
  • Evaluation of the reliability of the different COVID-19 tests among minoritized populations
  • Identification of racial and ethnic difference in the biomarkers of post COVID-19 conditions

The full paper can be viewed on the Population Health Management website here: To learn more about the MRCIS study, please contact Dr. Salvatore Alesci, SVP of the Center for Clinical and Social Research at [email protected].

About the National Minority Quality Forum

Founded in 1998, National Minority Quality Forum (NMQF) is a United States-based, health care research, education and advocacy organization whose mission is to reduce patient risk and advance health equity. NMQF utilizes data and research to support and mobilize healthcare organizations, leaders, policymakers, and patients in advocating for optimal care for every individual, especially those in minoritized communities. For more information, please visit