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Acting Physician General Visits Pennsylvania Latino Convention, Addresses Vaccine Hesitancy in Latinx Communities

09/30/2021

Reading, PA - Pennsylvania Department of Health Acting Physician General Dr. Denise Johnson today visited the Pennsylvania Latino Convention to address vaccine hesitancy among Latinx communities and encourage unvaccinated people to get a COVID-19 vaccine.  

“At the Department of Health, we are making it a priority to ensure that all Pennsylvanians have accurate information about and access to COVID-19 vaccines,” Dr. Johnson said. “We strive to work with trusted community leaders, especially everyone in attendance at this convention, to further educate individuals about the safety of the approved COVID-19 vaccines in languages that they understand. We also work with local organizations to get vaccine in all communities throughout the state.”  

Dr. Johnson’s visit to the Pennsylvania Latino Convention is another effort to educate individuals about the vaccine and help address any concerns. Throughout the vaccine rollout, the department has taken steps to ensure Pennsylvanians, no matter where they live or what language they speak, have access to COVID-19 vaccine educational materials and information in multiple languages, including Spanish. The department has also ensured that vaccine providers in minority communities receive and administer vaccine to individuals in an equitable way including through mobile vaccination clinics and outreach to people who can’t leave their home.  

“Together we have made great progress as over half of the Latino population in Pennsylvania is fully vaccinated, yet there are still people in the community who have yet to get vaccinated,” Dr. Johnson continued. “Today, I am asking each of you to reach out to your loved ones, friends and neighbors, and encourage them to protect their families by receiving the safe and easily available vaccine.”

“According to Census 2020, Pennsylvania’s total Latino population reached over one million residents and represented more than 50 percent of the state’s population growth,” Norman Bristol Colόn, chairman and founder of the Pennsylvania Latino Convention, said. “The PA Latino Convention was established to advance the social, educational, political, economic, cultural and healthy agenda for this population while strengthening partnerships with government, corporate and human service sectors. We are deeply honored to welcome Dr. Johnson to this year’s convention and are grateful for her outstanding leadership to our commonwealth.” 

To date, more than 51.9 percent of eligible Hispanic Pennsylvanians have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine within the Department of Health’s vaccine jurisdiction. 

You can monitor the progress of vaccinating all Pennsylvanians on the Pennsylvania COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.  

The Department of Health is working to ensure the vaccine is provided in a way that is ethical, equitable and efficient to all Pennsylvanians:   

  • All Pennsylvanians age 12 and older are eligible to schedule a COVID-19 vaccine. Use Vaccine Finder to find a COVID-19 vaccine provider near you.  
  • commonwealth COVID-19 vaccination guide explains the current process for getting one. Pennsylvanians with questions about the vaccination process can call the Department of Health hotline at 1-877-724-3258. 
  • Vaccine dashboard data can also be found on the website to find more information on the doses administered and showcase demographic information.  
  • The Unite Against COVID Weekly Update is a round-up of news you can use and answers to your most pressing vaccine questions – delivered directly to your inbox every week.  
  • Frequently asked questions can be found here.  

MEDIA CONTACT: Mark O'Neill - ra-dhpressoffice@pa.gov

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