The race to vaccinate continues as California targets minority communities

COVID-19 vaccinations
Posted at 8:56 AM, Apr 09, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-09 11:56:55-04

(KERO) — The CDC is now saying 1-in-4 adults have been fully vaccinated. This as Johnson and Johnson warns of a drop in supply next week.

Available doses of J&J's vaccine are expected to drop from around five million this week to 785,000 next week. The governor of Illinois is blaming a mix-up of ingredients at a Baltimore plant that ruined millions of doses yet to be sent out.

Federal officials insist it won't affect overall distribution goals.

Plus, vaccination sites in North Carolina and Colorado temporarily stopped giving J&J's shots after a small number of people had adverse reactions. Health experts say side effects are normal and insist the vaccines are safe.

"These were very mild, mild reactions. And the CDC actually came out with a statement in the evening saying that the vaccinations should resume," said ABC News medical contributor Dr. Imran Ali.

Even with the number of people getting vaccinated hospitalizations are on the rise in 17 states. Experts are cautioning young, unvaccinated Americans to be careful as their demographic is also seeing a rise.

The state, Kern County and 23ABC is dedicated to making sure those who have questions or concerns about the COVID-19 vaccine get the information they need. Here are some outreach programs and initiatives underway.

State public health has a new outreach campaign for black and African-American communities across California. The video is the latest part of the states' Let's Get To Immunity public education campaign.

According to the CDPH director data shows that COVID-19 disproportionately impacts black and African-American communities in terms of severity, mortality, and economics. And these communities are also being vaccinated at disproportionately low rates.

The campaign aims to target culturally specific concerns and questions surrounding the vaccine.

And the MLK Community Initiative has also been trying to spread awareness here in Bakersfield, encouraging African-Americans to get vaccinated. The group says less than 3 percent of African-Americans in Kern have received the COVID-19 vaccine despite being one of the demographics most at risk for the virus.

This Sunday the group will host a free COVID vaccine event at the People's Missionary Baptist Church on Madison Street off East Casa Loma Drive. It runs from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

And also trying to help combat the low numbers for certain groups the State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond and many others are holding a virtual roundtable to discuss how vaccinations can support Latin-x communities. Experts will address common concerns and questions.

It is open to the public the meeting is today from 11 a.m. to noon. You can watch it on Facebook.