KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Health experts across Kansas City, Missouri are finding ways to bring more vaccine to underserved communities.
“I didn’t even know she had shot me, so it didn’t hurt at all,” said James Watts, who got the vaccine on Wednesday.
Watts didn’t have to go far to get his COVID-19 vaccine. The shot was offered to him by Truman Medical Center in his neighborhood at the Linwood YMCA.
“I feel like I’m getting closer to being mobile and that I can’t travel,” Watts said.
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The hospital said that’s a way it’s reaching people in underserved communities. On Wednesday, people who got the shot were 65 and older or YMCA members in Phase 1B-Tier 2.
“We believe it’s necessary to bring vaccinations out in the community,” said Charlie Shields, president & CEO of Truman Medical Center. “We realize people may have some issues with transportation.”
Along with local hospitals, Kansas City is working to get people in Black and brown communities vaccinated by creating a COVID-19 task force.
Kansas City forms COVID-19 vaccine task force to better serve minority community
“It’s not enough to tell people to go online and sign up or call your healthcare provider,” Mayor Quinton Lucas said. “Tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of people in the Kansas City area don’t have a regular provider.”
Lucas said local health leaders are on the task force team to help the city reach more people.
Watts said he’s happy he got the shot and looks forward to local health leaders finding more ways to vaccinate more people like him.
“Have some faith and do your due diligence and do what’s your best interest,” Watts said.
One of the ways Lucas said the task force will reach people is by going to the zip codes where people are being impacted by the virus the most and signing people up for the shot.