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In March 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced that COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) reflected a global pandemic. Early epidemiological analyses demonstrated that boys and men have similar rates of COVID-19 infection to girls and women. However, boys and men appear to be disproportionately impacted with respect to severity and mortality, including those from marginalised or minority backgrounds. Yet, considerations of sex and gender, and their relationship to health and social inequities, have been absent from recent COVID-19 policy and practice pandemic responses. This evidence-based commentary discusses the nexus between COVID-19, equity, and boys and men’s health from a broad public health perspective. Using scholarship about intersections between race and gender; and poverty, social determinants of health, and gender; we explain why a health equity lens is important to address the health and social inequities boys and men face during pandemics. This contribution provides guidance about future global public health
pandemic responses for society’s most vulnerable groups of boys and men.
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