LOS ANGELES (CNS) — AltaMed Health Services has announced a partnership with community health centers across California to encourage Latinos between 18 and 35, who have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19, to get vaccinated.
“From San Diego to Sacramento, Latinos continue to face structural barriers to access vaccines,” AltaMed Health Services President/CEO Castula De La Rocha said in a statement. “We have over 50 years of experience tackling health care disparities, and we are approaching vaccination rates with proven community-led interventions.”
The Andale! Que Esperas? campaign is aimed at making vaccinations more accessible in urban and suburban areas disproportionately affected during the pandemic. The goal of the program is to ensure the community can protect themselves as they return to in-person school and work.
Organizers said only 46.3% of Latinos out of 13 million statewide are vaccinated, leaving 6 million unprotected. Andale! Que Esperas? aims to create awareness and urge Latinos to get vaccinated.
The public education traveling campaign began in Los Angeles on Monday, Aug. 23, and will move to Sacramento, San Francisco, Fresno and San Diego.
“As we work statewide to continue building on the progress we have made in improving vaccination rates among Latinos, AltaMed’s campaign — which is designed to build trust through community health centers and trusted messengers — will help serve California’s most impacted communities,” said Dr. Tomas Aragon, director of the California Department of Public Health.
According to a Kaiser Family Foundation report cited by AltaMed, one-third of unvaccinated Latinos, the highest proportion of any racial group, said they want the vaccine but face obstacles receiving it.
Student Giovanna Traconis said, “Like me, Latinos want the vaccine, but faced various obstacles in getting vaccinated, including economic anxiety from the possibility of missing work, confusion on the price of the vaccine and concern about being asked about citizenship.”