Health leaders see progress in push to get vaccinations in communities of color

TDH covid vaccine sign
Posted at 6:30 AM, Mar 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-29 07:30:38-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Metro health leaders say there has been progress in the campaign to increase vaccinations in communities of color.

"56% of white Nashvillians over 65, 48% of Black Nashvillians, 59% of people of Hispanic ethnicity over 65 have received their vaccine," Alex Jahangir, the chair of the Metro Board of Health, said during a briefing last week.

Health officials said that progress in minority communities comes as they continue outreach efforts, including an event at Lake Providence Missionary Baptist Church on Saturday morning. Officials planned to give 400 shots of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine at the church's Fellowship Hall.

"We're trying to get as many people vaccinated as we possibly can," Pastor Bruce Maxwell said. "It is very important to get it into communities of color."

It's an effort that is personal for Maxwell, whose brother died of COVID-19 earlier this year.

"So, I've seen how it can just completely deteriorate and kill a person in a short length of time," he said.

That's why Maxwell hopes his church can host similar events in the coming months.

"I'm very hopeful that this is the first of this type of event," Maxwell said. "We will open it up again to do this all over again!"