Immunize Nevada, Nevada’s only statewide nonprofit dedicated to immunizations with offices in Reno and Las Vegas, received $60,000 from the REACH program in partnership with the Southern Nevada Health District and Anthem Medicaid to serve minority populations during flu season.
Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health (REACH) is a national program directed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to reduce racial and ethnic health disparities. The REACH program focuses primarily on communities of color, specifically Black and Hispanic communities. Both communities are more likely to experience health disparities due to social determinants of health, such as income and the inability to access health insurance and/or health care, cultural skepticism when it comes to vaccines and health care, and lack of education and susceptibility to misinformation.
In partnership with the Southern Nevada Health District, Immunize Nevada worked diligently to bring flu shot clinics to communities of color in the Las Vegas Valley in a safe and effective manner while also adhering to COVID-19 community guidelines. Many of the clinics were also paired with other events happening at each location, such as food pantries, giveaways for backpacks packed with necessities and hot meals for the homeless. The organization was also responsible for partnering with health care professionals to administer flu shots, including those with Smith’s Pharmacy and Albertsons Pharmacy, as well as Touro University and Roseman University.
“We’re grateful to have had the opportunity to provide care for communities in settings that are most comfortable and convenient for them,” said Heidi Parker, executive director of Immunize Nevada. “We’re fortunate to partner with health care professionals who share the same passion for educating our community about the importance of vaccines and for supporting us in our to efforts keep the community safe.”
Some of the local clinic locations include the Martin Luther King Jr. Senior Center, Marketon Supermarket, Bonito Michoacan Mexican restaurant, and the First African Methodist Episcopal Church.
“The goal of bringing these clinics to communities of color is to provide free vaccines to those struggling to access health care, and to educate those who may be skeptical about the safety and efficacy of vaccines and health care overall,” Parker added. “We do our best to provide helpful resources to those who want to learn more and vaccines for those who want them, with or without insurance.”
To date, these efforts have allowed for 218 people specifically in the REACH program to be vaccinated.
About Immunize Nevada
Immunize Nevada is widely recognized as Nevada’s trusted resource for immunizations and community health for all ages by fostering education and statewide collaboration. Immunize Nevada’s vision is healthy communities across Nevada protected from vaccine-preventable disease. For more information, visit ImmunizeNevada.org.