April is National Minority Health Month (#NMHM2022)! This year’s theme is Give Your Community a Boost, focusing on the importance of COVID-19 vaccination. CDC data show that some racial and ethnic minority groups have been impacted differently by Covid, showing how these communities have experienced higher rates of infection, hospitalization, and death.
Together let’s debunk misinformation and encourage our communities to get fully vaccinated. Join us and @MinorityHealth to learn how to #BoostYourCommunity or visit www.minorityhealth.hhs.gov/nmhm/.
Here in Skagit County
According to our 2020-21 Skagit Community Health Assessment when COVID hit, the Hispanic/ Latino community, along with other communities of color were disproportionately harmed by COVID. Why? Hispanics / Latinos are disproportionally represented in essential workforces and consequently, overexposed to the virus.
COVID-19 cases and rates in Skagit per 100,000 population, by race and ethnic origin show how 2,025 cases were made up by Indigenous Hawaiian/ Pacific Islander, Hispanic (all races), American Indian/Alaska Native, people of color and Asian.
Why is it important?
Reducing health disparities and improving health equity for our racial and ethnic minority groups will help save lives, reduce the risk of getting sick and having severe illnesses.
Ways we can help increase vaccine confidence
Presenting several strategies to our communities can help increase COVID-19 vaccine trust and help advance vaccine equity within the community. Here are some ways we could help do that. For more strategies visit https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/health-equity/race-ethnicity.html
Develop culturally relevant materials
- Provide messaging and tone that is culturally relevant and predominant languages spoken in the community.
- For an example, at our mass COVID-19 Testing and Vaccine site we had all materials in both Spanish and English. Also provided patients with Spanish and Mixtec Interpreters at our site.
Partner with trusted messengers within the community
- Collaborated with community partners like Community-to-Community development (C2C), Skagit County YMCA, Skagit Valley College, Chinook Enterprises, Boys and Girls Club, churches etc.
Address any community concerns or questions
- Skagit County Public Health nurses, CHWs and Promotoras conducted a Q&A session for Spanish speaking women at the Methodist church. At our mass vaccination site staff created a safe observation area for those who had gotten vaccinated or had any questions or concerns about COVID-19.
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