Delaware concerned over low numbers of minority populations getting vaccine

WILMINGTON, Delaware (WPVI) -- Officials in Delaware are concerned about low numbers in certain minority populations getting the vaccine.

So far just 5% of the people who have received the vaccine are Black, and just 2% are Hispanic.

"These numbers are not OK with us and it's really driving us to make some significant changes in how we are reaching underserved populations," Dr. Karyl Rattay, Director, Delaware Division of Public Health, said during a press briefing on Wednesday.

Officials said, along with getting residents to sign up with the state's registry, they are looking at other ways to reach people in their communities.

The state has started the process of reaching out to seniors in minority communities to schedule appointments.

It's part of the state's move into Phase 1B of its vaccination plan, which includes people 65 and older.

Rattay said they are working with pharmacies and medical practices in underserved areas to help spread the word of the vaccines and administer them.

Hospitals are also holding events to reach underserved communities.

In 31 percent of vaccination records, race remains unreported.

The state said Governor John Carney plans to announce steps this week to ensure that enrolled vaccination providers promptly report race and other demographic information to the Delaware Division of Public Health.
Copyright © 2021 WPVI-TV. All Rights Reserved.