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Johnson County, Missouri, ramps up COVID-19 vaccine outreach – Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City, Missouri 2021-07-14 19:40:58 –

Warrensburg, Missouri — Johnson County, Missouri has one of the lowest immunization rates in the state.

According to data from Johnson County Community Health Services, approximately 21.7% of county residents are fully vaccinated and 24% are first vaccinated.

Community outreach coordinator Kerri Lewis wants to increase that number.

“This was a new vaccine and it was like a fight all the time,” Lewis said.

Lewis said they were seeing a lot of passive people. Sometimes it’s because of the fear of side effects of the vaccine, and sometimes it’s just that you want to do more research.

She said many people seem uncomfortable with getting and getting the vaccine. That’s why her team is working to change the way people talk and think about the COVID-19 vaccine.

“Not only is the internet flooded with false information, but it’s all over the conversation,” Lewis said. “We encourage you to chat with your primary care physician. Ask those questions. The pros and cons of vaccination, and the potential you may encounter if you are not vaccinated. Weigh the risks. “

Positive rates in Johnson County, Missouri have skyrocketed by 7% since early July.

Their county now has an average of 6 new cases per day, previously 1 or 2 per day.

At the peak of the pandemic, the number was 25-30. Lewis attributed this to more unvaccinated people gathering during the summer.

“It can be frustrating because so many people know that they are reluctant to vaccinate,” Lewis said. “It’s difficult, there are enough people who aren’t happy or confident about a very, very quick vaccine that wants to give them a reason not to receive the vaccine.”

To counter the increasing number of cases, staff organize a walk-in vaccination clinic every Wednesday.

They also lead community engagement at local universities such as the school district, University of Central Missouri, and host pop-up clinics in surrounding provincial cities.

“We hosted a large immunization clinic on campus for students and family students to get vaccinated. About 1,000 people came to get their first vaccination,” said Lewis. Just recently, we sent some nurses and some vaccines for some of the international students who came to secure the opportunity to get vaccinated. “

According to Lewis, the county’s goal is aimed at everyone who has not been vaccinated.

41 Action News asked several residents of Johnson County about why the county chose to opt out.

“I often feel that people are pushed into it,” one resident who wanted to remain anonymous told 41 Action News. “And when you’re really pushed, people wonder if there’s a reason if you have a motive.”

Joshua Parham, a chemistry lecturer at the University of Central Missouri, said, “There is a general distrust of science, and in addition to this problem, it is politicized in that way that changes people’s minds. It’s difficult. ”

Shawna Gard, Holden, Missouri, is one of those who changed their minds.

She hesitated to get the vaccine when she felt that there wasn’t enough research, but she came this week. She said her students eventually changed her mind as a teacher returning to school this fall.

“There are a lot of negatives surrounding it.’Oh, it’s just a phase. It’s a fad. The government is trying to rule us,” she said.

Johnson County, Missouri, ramps up COVID-19 vaccine outreach Source link Johnson County, Missouri, ramps up COVID-19 vaccine outreach

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