PHOENIX - A shift is taking place in how Arizona is working to provide the COVID-19 vaccine to its residents.
On Saturday, community members worked with the Arizona Dept. of Health Services (ADHS) to go door to door to focus on outreach and combat misinformation.
"We’re trying to get into the communities to increase vaccinations," said ADHS director Dr. Cara Christ.
As bookings at mass vaccination sites have declined, the need to reach herd immunity - which scientists say would be about 70% of population vaccinated - continues. The focus is on underserved neighborhoods.
"This is going to be our most important strategy," Christ said. "Being in the community with trusted community leaders, working one in one with individuals because these communities have been hit really hard with COVID-19, but we also have very low vaccination rates. We want to make sure people have access to the vaccine and can get vaccinations."
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Education is key, according to the state's health director.
"There is a lot of misinformation about the vaccine," Christ said. "It’s gone through rigorous clinical trials. it’s safe. it’s effective."
And the mayor of Phoenix says it can work on anyone's schedule.
"We’re telling people how easy it is," Mayor Kate Gallego said. "I’ve been hearing a lot from people who say, ‘I work every day of the week, I don’t have time.’ We’re out in your community, you can come in quickly, you don’t need an appointment."
That’s what the outreach team is saying as they speak to residents, hoping it leads to shots in arms.
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