Representatives Shannon Bird, Lindsey Daugherty and Brianna Titone and Senator Rachel Zenzinger will hold a Town Hall tomorrow, Saturday Aug 20 from 10:30am-noon at the Standley Lake Library (8485 Kipling St, Arvada, CO 80005). Join and let them know you support pro-vaccine policies!
Creating Vaccine Confidence through Building Community: Colorado Immunization Advocates (CIA) Board Member partners with Independent Health Equity Consultant to have a conversation about vaccinations
Julissa Soto, Independent Health Equity Consultant, is passionate about raising vaccination rates in the Latino community. CIA board member Aimee Bernard, PhD, Immunology, is passionate about educating the public about vaccinations. These shared interests lead them to recently hold a vaccine information session, in English and Spanish, to address concerns and answer questions from members of Colorado's Latino Community. Earlier this month, twenty people joined this session, sponsored by Immunize Colorado and Colorado Access, to learn more about why vaccinations are so important to maintaining community health.
Colorado currently ranks second to last in the nation in COVID-19 vaccinations in the Latino Community and also lags behind in other vaccinations like TDap and MMR. Recognizing that this is a result of lack of access to vaccines and a need for greater awareness of their importance, Ms. Soto has spent the last year holding vaccination clinics for her community, primarily through her highly successful "Vaccination Sundays" (““Domingos de Vacunación”) campaign. Almost 20,000 members of the Latino community have received COVID-19 vaccinations at these events. Wanting to build on that success, her future clinics will offer other vaccines as well.
To help increase the understanding of the importance of routine vaccinations and to give community members a chance to ask questions, Ms.Soto and Dr. Bernard designed their informal Q & A session to create a safe space for people to ask questions and receive accurate, science-based answers. Attendees asked a range of questions, which included inquiries about the side effects of vaccination, to the amount of doses required, at what age children should receive a COVID vaccine, how the newly approved Novovax vaccine works, and why the Catholic Church is ok with some COVID vaccines but not others. “This casual conversation was a small event where community members came together to get accurate information from a trusted source to help them make informed healthcare decisions for themselves, their families and communities. Overall we had a great time talking about vaccines and answering so many thoughtful questions.”, says Dr. Bernard. Adds Ms. Soto, “Este fue uno de los mejores webinars en los cuales he participado. Todos nos sentimos en casa. Preguntamos sin prejuicios. Aqui todos eramos familia. (This was one of the best webinars I have ever participated in. We all felt at home. We asked without prejudice. Here we were all family.)” Based on the success of this webinar, they hope to hold more in the coming weeks and months to continue raising awareness about the importance of vaccinations.