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UK planning pop-up COVID-19 vaccine clinics to help underserved communities in Lexington

Published: Feb. 19, 2021 at 3:42 PM EST
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - One of the challenges of the COVID-19 vaccine is equal access. The city of Lexington and the University of Kentucky are teaming up to go directly into areas to target minority groups. They’re starting this weekend at Keeneland, to target a large Hispanic population.

“So much of the labor force of the workforce within the horse industry is Hispanic,” UK Spokesperson Jay Blanton said.

Blanton says Keeneland’s large property is a perfect site for the first pop-up clinic. The goal is to vaccinate 500 people each weekend.

Blanton clarifies that these people aren’t being vaccinated just because of their race or ethnicity. They also fit into the eligible groups. According to the state’s COVID-19 vaccine demographics, minorities are being vaccinated at a much slower rate that isn’t proportional to the population. Blanton says access and comfort are two major challenges.

“It’s not surprising there are some hesitancy about the vaccine among some populations in particular. And that’s frankly based on long-term historic systemic issues with respect to healthcare and healthcare access. So we’ve always got to play a part to address those,” Blanton said.

UK says it will have several translators on site to make sure every word is translated clearly.

All of those vaccinations will be by appointment only for people in those areas.

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