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Getting Creative To Reach Unvaccinated Latinos in Denver : Shots ...

the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19
Colorado Public Radio
the Kaiser Family Foundation
CONCACAF Nations League
Colorado Public Radio
the Latino Research and Policy Center
the Colorado School of Public Health
the Workplace Vaccination Program
Karimme Quintana
Promotora de Salud Pública
University of Colorado Health
the Tepeyac Community Health Center
Colorado Public Radio and Kaiser Health News (KHN

John Daley
Raul Gomez
Kevin J. Beaty
Oscar Filipe Sanchez

Lilia Cervantes
Jesus Romero Serrano
Ruby Hill
Fernando Holguin
Latino Coloradans
Diego Montemayor
Karimme Quintana
Danica Farrington
Pamela Valenza

Latino community."Black Coloradans
Latino Coloradans

Latino Westwood

Mile High Stadium
Empower Field at Mile High

Colorado Springs
Barnum West

The Champions for Vaccine Equity

Positivity     34.52%   
   Negativity   65.48%
The New York Times
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During half-time at a Mexico-USA match in Denver, Oscar Filipe Sanchez receives the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccination inside a mobile health clinic parked outside Empower Field at Mile High.Long gone are the days in early spring when vaccine appointments were snatched up the instant they became available, and health care workers worried about making sure patients were actually eligible under state and federal criteria for age and health status.Colorado, and most of the nation, has now moved into a new phase involving targeted efforts and individual interactions and using trusted community influencers to convince the hesitant to get jabbed.With about half of Colorado's 5.78 million population now fully immunized, the challenge cuts across all demographic groups. With vaccine availability now widespread, health leaders are searching for ways to communicate its availability, and support greater acceptance of the message that the vaccine will allow the vaccinated to return to their pre-pandemic lives.Denver has hit the 70 percent threshold for resident vaccination but some of its Latino neighborhoods are getting vaccinated at much lower rates, according to Dr. Lilia Cervantes, an associate professor in the department of medicine at Denver Health."There are some very high-risk neighborhoods where most of the community are first-generation or foreign-born individuals," said Cervantes. Serrano met with Latino soccer fans before the match, encouraging them to get vaccinated.According to data from Denver's health agencies, about 40 percent of Latinos older than 12 are vaccinated in Denver county — that's far below the roughly 75 percent rate for white Denverites. Some of the highest case rates in the greater Denver area are in some of the mostly Latino neighborhoods, like those in west Denver, like Barnum West, Westwood, and Ruby Hill, Cervantes noted."I think that it is critical that we improve vaccine uptake in our most marginalized groups, including those who are undocumented and those who are Spanish-language dominant," she said if the state hopes to reach broad levels of protection from the virus. "This past year, I think we have seen stark health inequities in the Latino community."Black Coloradans also lag behind, according to the state dashboard, but not as much as Hispanic residents; they make up about 4 percent of the state's population but are a little less than 3 percent of those who have been vaccinated.All this portends a more uneven pandemic, says Dr. Fernando Holguin, a pulmonologist and critical care doctor at the Latino Research and Policy Center at the Colorado School of Public Health. The KFF report found 19 percent of unvaccinated adults are Hispanic; of that group, 20 percent said they will "wait and see" about getting vaccinated, 11 percent said they'd "definitely not" get it.Both Cervantes and Holguin credit local, state, and community groups with aggressively looking to boost vaccination rates among Latino Coloradans, while also encouraging them to keep recruiting trusted community voices from within, to help deliver the message. "There's going to be people in the community convincing others to get vaccinated." At Empower Field, soccer fan Diego Montemayor, another Denver resident, echoed that sentiment, saying some fans who got shots themselves urged friends who came to the stadium to visit the RV and get one too. Ask me.") "Latino people, they listen (to) the neighbor, they listen (to) my friend," Quintana says.University of Colorado Health nurse Danica Farrington says the vaccine effort at the soccer tournament was heavily promoted beforehand on billboards and big screens inside the stadium during the game."They just plastered it everywhere and said, go get your shot," she said.

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