ROANOKE, Virginia – City of Roanoke leaders and health experts are teaming up to fight inequalities in the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine.
“We’re just at the start of closing the gap, so I’d say we still have an incredible amount of work to do,” said Dr Cynthia Morrow, director of the Roanoke City and Alleghany health districts.
Disparities prevail on several levels.
Much of the focus is on hard-hit African American and Hispanic communities, specifically targeted through clinics and strike teams that share information and build trust.
“Over the past several months we’ve built this relationship with the different types of influencers within the community who can then step out into the community and make those connections,” said Bob Cowell, City of Roanoke Director.
Technology is another huge barrier, especially for the elderly and those living in rural areas. The city is tackling this problem through a call center, made up of library workers to help people register, even if they can’t access the Internet.
They also reconnect with trusted members of the community.
“We recognize that this is not something that we will be able to fix …
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