NYC continues outreach in communities with low vaccination rates

NEW YORK (PIX11) – New York City health leaders are making the Brooklyn Children’s Museum a COVID-19 vaccination site for the youngest New Yorkers, once again targeting communities of color where skepticism about the vaccines is still high.

“We’ve seen the gaps close between Black and brown vaccination rates. Vaccination rates at NYCHA housing has started to close toward the citywide average. We are seeing gains, but there is still more to do,” said Dr. Ashwin Vasan, New York City’s health commissioner.

Brooklyn has the lowest COVID-19 vaccination rate out of all five boroughs among all ages. Only half the eligible 5- to 17-year-olds are fully vaccinated, according to city data.

SOMOS Community Care serves 1.2 million patients across the five boroughs. Dr. Ramon Tallaj said convincing the Hispanic and Latino community to get vaccinated will be an uphill battle this summer. SOMOS is aiming for a much higher vaccination rate by the time students return to school in the fall with a goal of 500,000 students vaccinated.

Despite all age groups, aside from newborns, being able to get vaccinated against COVID-19, health leaders said the pandemic is not over.

“We are still dealing with the continued risk of infections, vulnerable people around us, and we don’t have enough people vaccinated and boosted to get the robust protection these vaccines can afford us,” said Dr. Dara Kass, regional director of Health and Human Services.