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COVID-19 testing targets Lexington’s Hispanic community

Published: Jun. 27, 2020 at 2:51 PM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - As COVID-19 numbers rise, the City of Lexington is taking a targeted approach to reach the Hispanic community.

Saturday was the third and final day of mobile testing in the Cardinal Valley neighborhood.

Numbers show the Hispanic community has been hit hard by COVID-19 recently. In fact, they make up almost 30 percent of new cases in Lexington, but only about seven percent of the city’s population.

“That’s obviously extremely disproportionate,” said Bobby Sturgeon from Bluewater Diagnostics. “If we can literally reach out to more Latinos, because we have a really large population in Lexington, it’s going to give us better numbers. And the more testing we get out, the better off will be in the long run.”

Melissa McCarty added, “A lot of that has to do with they don’t know where to get tested, and transportation to go and get tested. So we came to them instead of them coming to us.”

But they’re not just supplying the tests.

Bluewater Diagnostics partnered with city leaders to provide three interpreters, including Isabel Gereda Taylor who works for Lexington’s Multicultural Affairs department.

“You listen to and you comprehend in your own language,” she explained. She points out that even though many people speak English, presenting the information in Spanish helps ensure that nothing is lost in translation. “We’re also trying to overcome some cultural barriers of trust and fear.”

Overall, they’re hoping to stop the spread of COVID-19 throughout all of Lexington.

It starts by reaching out to everyone.

“It’s very important to take care of our international population to take care of all of us in this pandemic,” Taylor said.

Para ver las noticias presentadas en español, vea “Las noticias de hoy” todos los días en nuestra página de Facebook WKYT.

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