Latino vaccination rate now surpasses that of non-Hispanic residents
State health officials with the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services credit a steady increase in vaccinations among Latinos to targeted work in the community.
Director of Hispanic/Latinx Policy and Strategy Yazmin Garcia Rico attributes the growth to programs like the summer cash card which, although no longer in place, helped people cover the cost of transportation and allowed them to miss work.
Other efforts like the employer-mandated vaccine and the Healthier Together: Health Equity Action Network initiative have also helped the rise in vaccinations. Healthier Together is a collaboration with community outreach organizations that aims to deliver equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines, and aids residents in things like scheduling vaccine appointments and getting to local vaccine events.
Garcia Rico says these efforts in conjunction are making a difference.
“Overall we are doing really well. We are outperforming in terms of vaccinations and that is really showing in the numbers,” says Garcia Rico.
Currently, 61.9% of people in the Hispanic community ages 12 and older have been vaccinated, compared to 53.2% of the non-Hispanic population.
Garcia Rico said that the department is continuing to prioritize outreach for vaccination and first doses and will continue doing local outreach by expanding the Healthier Together initiative.
*Editor's Note: An earlier version of this story misidentified the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services.
This story was produced by a partnership between WFDD and La Noticia. You can read this story in Spanish at
Eileen Rodriguez is a reporter for both WFDD and La Noticia through Report for America, where she covers COVID-19's impact in the Latino Communities.
Periodista de La Noticia y 88.1 WFDD, Eileen Rodríguez reporta el impacto de COVID-19 en la comunidad Latina en Carolina del Norte. Rodríguez es miembro del cuerpo de periodistas de Report for America 2021-2022