Health education campaign to help Latinos in Virginia get vaccinated / Public Information Service

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ARLINGTON, Virginia – Although COVID-19 rates have declined, the virus continues to hit the Hispanic community particularly hard. Now, a new campaign aims to reduce health disparities and tackle misinformation about vaccines to keep Latinos healthy.

Across the country, the vaccination rate of Hispanics is alarming, according to Georgetown University President Dr. Federico Asch, director of the American Heart Association’s Greater Washington Area Board of Trustees, which sponsors the countryside. He said “Stay on Fuerte for All” encourages healthcare providers to overcome language barriers and correct misinformation about the vaccine.

“It is extremely important,” he said, “that when we communicate with the Hispanic community, we do so in our language so that they can understand that they have access to health care that is actually being provided. in Spanish, so that they can have one and smooth communication with suppliers.

Virginia is one of the few states that has successfully reached a higher number of Latinos for COVID vaccinations, with about 65% fully vaccinated this week, according to the state’s health department. But the rate is much lower in some areas – just 45% in the seven Hampton Roads towns.

Asch said it was important to target the Hispanic community because it includes many essential workers, who have had to go to workplaces and face higher risks of COVID. He added that some are employed in low-paying jobs that do not offer affordable health insurance, which exposes them to underlying health issues.

“Hispanics tend to have much higher rates of co-morbidities that predispose them to severe forms of COVID-19,” he said. “For example, hypertension, diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease and lung disease.”

He said he wanted people to know that there is no cost for the vaccine and that no special documents are needed other than ID to prove age to get it. a. They are available to everyone aged 12 and over, and regulators are expected to make the vaccine available to ages 5 to 11 in the coming weeks.

Disclosure: The Mid Atlantic Affiliate of the American Heart Association contributes to our fund for reporting on health issues, hunger / diet / nutrition, poverty issues and smoking prevention. If you would like to help support the news in the public interest, click here.

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