Douglas County’s minority populations continue falling behind with COVID-19 vaccinations
“Today we have a new day, we’re opening our longterm vaccination clinic at 35th & L Streets,” Dr. Adi Pour, Director, DCHD.
OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - Three months into the rollout and minority populations still aren’t getting the COVID-19 vaccine at the same rate as white people, with Douglas County’s top doctor announcing several moves Tuesday to help close the gap.
“Today we have a new day. “We’re opening our long-term vaccination clinic at 35th & L Streets,” said Dr. Adi Pour, Director, Douglas County Health Department. “That is going to be a steady clinic there. We are expecting 2,000 people there today.”
“Relieved that I’m getting close to the point that I can finally be around other people,” said Manuel Deluna, after getting his first shot of the COVID-19 vaccine on opening day of the clinic in South Omaha.
Dr. Pour said the goal is to help make the vaccine more accessible to the Hispanic community
“A lot of outreach to the Hispanic population, and right now really focusing on the clinic on 35th and L Streets because that’s really kind of in the heart and where people work,” said Dr. Pour.
Hispanic people make up about 13% of Douglas County’s population, yet have only received about 6% of the first shots of the vaccine. The numbers are similar among the Black population.
“Yes, yes, yes, we need more vaccine clinics in North Omaha,” said Doris Lassiter, Health Ministry Director, New Era State Baptist Convention of Nebraska.
She’s been working with the county to bring mobile clinics to local churches.
“We have to have these partnerships,” said Lassiter, “As we can see know the benefit of the summer when we did our COVID testing at church sites, that was quite helpful.”
For these mobile clinics, the county’s hoping to get more doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
“To have strike teams go out or mobile teams go out, J&J is really the best vaccine to have because you don’t have to go back and try to find the people again,” said Dr. Pour. “You get one shot and they’re done. You don’t have to worry about it anymore.”
Back in South Omaha, Deluna told 6 News he can’t stop worrying.
“It seems like I’m knowing more and more people who are getting COVID and it’s all around us, work, everywhere,” he said, encouraging others to do as he did and get the shot.
“I do see some people being negative about it, but I tell them not to,” said Deluna. “I just go ahead and do it, let’s just all jump into this together.”
On Tuesday, Dr. Pour said the county is also looking to set up a drive-through vaccination site at the Metropolitan Community College campus in South Omaha, similar to what they’re doing at the Fort campus in North Omaha.
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