UTICA, N.Y. -- A group of community leaders met virtually Tuesday evening to discuss ways in which to get overlooked populations the vaccines they need.
Minority communities have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic and have also been found to be more skeptical of getting the vaccine.
A panel was hosted by the Rome Chapter of the NAACP to discuss how to build trust in the vaccine amongst underserved communities. The panel, which included Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente, focused on outreach methods as well as the root cause of why these communities are so disproportionately affected in the first place.
"A lot of our communities have the poorest health care, the poorest follow up," said Dr. Hamerton Jeanty, MVHS Provider. "A lot of them are underprivileged and can't afford medications, can't afford to get the best outcomes. So it's very important that we recognize that for many reasons, these communities are at risk. And once we understand that, we can begin to see why we need to have full participation in vaccination in the minority communities."
A state-run pop up vaccination site was set up at Utica's Parkway Community Center two weeks ago, with the intention of reaching out to the minority community.