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The Hmong Institute to host vaccine clinic for Hmong, Southeast Asian residents

The organization partnered with free clinic Benevolent Specialists Project to administer over...
The organization partnered with free clinic Benevolent Specialists Project to administer over 40 first doses.(WMTV/Sanika Bhargaw)
Published: Apr. 16, 2021 at 9:21 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - The Hmong Institute is holding a COVID-19 vaccine clinic Saturday for Hmong and Southeast Asian residents.

The Hmong Institute reports people of color are getting vaccinated at disproportionate amounts to their representation of the general population.

According to the Department of Health Services, 29.3% of those who identify as Asian have received at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose, while 36.2% of residents who identify as white have received at least one dose. Residents who identify as American Indian and Black are reported at 23.1% and 16.3%, respectively, for first doses.

CEO of the Hmong Institute, Peng Her, explained that while everyone 16 and older is eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine in the state, the Hmong and Southeast Asian community is still having trouble accessing vaccines.

“For many in the Hmong and Southeast Asian community, language and travel continue to be two biggest barriers,” said Her. “Language barriers discourage many from watching the evening news in English, resulting in not knowing where vaccine clinics are being held.”

Her also added that many people also lack the computer skills necessary to schedule a vaccine appointment, and those who work two jobs do not have time time to drive to another city to get their vaccine.

The Hmong Institute is partnering with Access Community Health Centers, the WI Hmong Nurse Association and Hmong Medical Association to administer these vaccines at the clinic.

CEO of Access Community Health Centers, Dr. Ken Loving, said the health system is aware of the disproportionate rates of vaccination on communities of color.

“Access is privileged to partner with the Hmong Institute to vaccinate members of the Hmong and Southeast Asian communities,” said Dr. Loving.

The vaccine appointments will go from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday at The Hmong Institute at 4402 Femrite Drive. It is available by appointment only.

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