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Vaccine registration clinic aims for convenience in order to reach community groups

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Posted at 6:22 PM, Apr 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-29 21:40:02-04

INDIANAPOLIS — Many vaccine clinics are now offering walk-in availability, but the best way to ensure your appointment is at a time that works for you is to register in advance.

The Marion County Health Department and community partners are working to make that as convenient as possible Thursday.

A registration event is being held on the second floor of the John H. Boner Neighborhood Center, located at 2236 E. 10th Street.

The health department is offering a morning session and an evening session. The evening session runs from 6 to 8 p.m.

One woman said she she decided to come to the Boner Center for a different service when the signs for the registration clinic caught her eye. She said was grateful she could sign up for her vaccine so easily.

Dr. Virginia Caine, Chief Medical Officer of the Marion County Health Department, said that is exactly the goal of events like these.

“It’s important for us to try and reach them where they are,” Dr. Caine said. “Trying to reach those hard to reach populations who may have issues with access and may have issues with transportation and they may have issues that they don’t have anyone talk with about their concerns or be able to answer their questions related to the vaccine.”

While there has been an increase in vaccinations among minority groups, the Marion County Health Department is still reporting gaps. They are working to address those.

At the start of the vaccine process, there were several reasons people in the Latino community were not getting their shots. But a lot of those concerns have been addressed.

“Those barriers have been removed so individuals that are Latinos or immigrants they don’t have to have health insurance, they don’t have to have a state ID," Marlene Dotson, President of the Indiana Latino Institute said.

There has also been little uptake in vaccinations among young people in the Asian American community.

“Asian community has been proactively taking the vaccine however a lot of younger generation like when we opened to 16 and up not a lot of people are taking they just think we are ok and don’t need the vaccine,” Rupal Thanawala, President of the Asian American Alliance said.

Those issues are still being addressed with outreach programs like these. The registration clinic is one of several ways the health department is working to reach different groups of people.

“What may resonate with someone over 65 may be totally different than our young 25-year-olds,” Caine added.

The goal is to continue to find the best ways to get more people registered and keep Marion County on the path back to normalcy.

The registration clinic at the John Boner Neighborhood Center runs from 6 -8 p.m. tonight.