Intersectionality within a pandemic context recognizes that individuals experience the impacts of health emergencies differently due to the complex ways in which social identities intersect to reflect structural distribution of power.
Findings from the COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the different direct and indirect impacts on individuals across social categories. Structural discrimination associated with patriarchy, racism, classism, ageism etc.is reflected in individuals’ experiences as categorized by gender, class, age, race, sexual identity etc., contributing to the distinct impacts, which differ and compound where multiple identities intersect.
This brief aims to explore how intersectional approaches might be applied to improve pandemic preparedness and response, and to better ensure the health and human rights of priority populations during health crisis. We first introduce intersectionality as a concept and then, drawing on research from the COVID-19 pandemic, sketch out how it might be applied to pandemic preparedness and response.
Muhammad Haaris Tiwana, Alice Mũrage and Julia Smith (2023) Applying intersectional approaches to pandemic preparedness and response, Pacific Institute on Pathogens, Pandemics, and Society