ARLINGTON, Texas — Texas Health Resources has received a boost in its efforts to bring COVID-19 vaccines to underserved communities thanks to a $1 million grant from the Communities Foundation of Texas.
Funding provided by Communities Foundation of Texas’ W.W. Caruth, Jr. Fund will be used by Texas Health’s Community Health Improvement team to scale up community vaccination efforts in the region’s most underserved communities in a mix of urban, suburban, and rural settings, with a focus on Erath, Johnson, Kaufman and Tarrant counties.
“The percentage of people who need to be vaccinated is still high,” said Rosemary Galdiano, M.P.H., R.N., OCN, director of Texas Health’s Mobile Health program. “The people we’re trying to reach are the ones most at risk for serious complications and most likely to wind up in the hospital, fighting for their lives. With this help, we’re going to be able to continue the hard work of embedding ourselves in the communities, educating the patient population and developing trust in places that we haven’t been before.”
The planned approach includes increasing messaging about the vaccination campaign, culturally and linguistically appropriate outreach and education about COVID-19 and available vaccine sites, as well as expanding mobile vaccination clinics available in the region. Texas Health will set up vaccination sites at community centers and churches in the communities, use a bilingual and bicultural mobile team and provide transportation for patients to and from mobile vaccination clinics, especially in rural areas.
“Communities Foundation of Texas is proud to help increase vaccine access and education through this $1 million dollar investment in the work of Texas Health Resources. This grant is the largest of six recent health focused grants that total $2.4 million and align with our goal of expanding health equity across North Texas, especially for community members with limited access to healthcare and vaccines,” said Sarah Cotton Nelson, Chief Philanthropy Officer for Communities Foundation of Texas.
Since the roll-out of COVID-19 vaccines, Texas Health has been committed to distributing vaccines in an efficient, safe and equitable manner. National data has shown communities of color were less likely to receive vaccines through mass distribution centers because of transportation and technology barriers as well as misinformation and language limitations.
“Texas Health has created an equitable distribution strategy tailored to meet the needs of communities that are more likely to face access barriers,” said Catherine Oliveros, vice president of Community Health Improvement at Texas Health. “Thankfully, across the Texas Health service area, we spent the last two years building relationships in key underserved communities through Texas Health Community Impact. This allowed us to mobilize our networks and resources during this crisis to go to where people work, live, play and pray, bringing the vaccine to neighborhoods, providing them through a trusted partner, and offering an experience in their preferred language.”
Shannon Fisher, vice president at Texas Health Resources Foundation, said philanthropy has been called upon to play a more critical role than ever before in our community throughout the pandemic.
“We are grateful to the many donors who have continued to support Texas Health and other non-profit partners in our community. It is philanthropic partnerships like this one with Communities Foundation of Texas that will allow us to address vaccine hesitancy and build equitable access and uptake of COVID-19 vaccines in North Texas,” Fisher said.
To find a pop-up COVID-19 vaccination clinic, click here. For appointment scheduling or if you have questions about your second dose, call 1-855-318-7696. Walk-ins are welcome.
About Communities Foundation of Texas
With the goal of building thriving communities for all, Communities Foundation of Texas (CFT) works locally and across the state through a variety of charitable funds and strategic initiatives. The public foundation professionally manages
1,000 charitable funds for individuals, families, companies and nonprofits in addition to powering several key initiatives such as W. W. Caruth, Jr. Fund at CFT, Educate Texas at CFT and CFT’s North Texas Giving Day. CFT has awarded more than $2 billion in grants since its founding in 1953.
Learn more at CFTexas.org.
About Texas Health Resources
Texas Health Resources is a faith-based, nonprofit health system that cares for more patients in North Texas than any other provider. With a service area that consists of 16 counties and more than 7 million people, the system is committed to providing quality, coordinated care through its Texas Health Physicians Group and 29 hospital locations under the banners of Texas Health Presbyterian, Texas Health Arlington Memorial, Texas Health Harris Methodist and Texas Health Huguley. Texas Health access points and services, ranging from acute-care hospitals and trauma centers to outpatient facilities and home health and preventive services, provide the full continuum of care for all stages of life. The system has more than 4,100 licensed hospital beds, 6,400 physicians with active staff privileges and more than 26,000 employees. For more information about Texas Health, call 1-877-THR-WELL, or visit www.TexasHealth.org.