Wichita Black Nurses, in conjunction with the Sedgwick County Health Department have completed two successful community-based COVID-19 vaccine clinics for individuals and they’re set to do more.

The first two clinics held on consecutive Sundays at St. James Missionary Baptist Church and Tabernacle Bible Church filled up quickly. At St James, the nurses vaccinated 144 individuals, and at Tabernacle, they planned to vaccinate 150, but were scheduled for 165.

Their next two vaccination clinics scheduled to date are:

Tues., March 23, 2-6 p.m. at Saint Mark United Methodist Church, 1525 N. Lorraine, Wichita and

Sun., April 11, 1-5 p.m. at Saint Mary’s Baptist Church, 1648 E. 17th St. N., Wichita.

Vaccinations will be administered by appointment only. To schedule an appointment, eligible individuals are asked to reach out directly to each of the churches. For Saint Mark, call (316) 681-2214 and for St. Mary’s, call (316) 265-2044.

According to Maggie Thompson, spokesperson for the Black nurses, they are setting up to vaccinate 400 people at each of those clinics. The clinics are not just for members of the churches where they’re sponsored. Thompson said they nurses are depending on the ministers at other churches to encourage their members to participate.

The nurses decided to sponsor the community-based vaccination after seeing how few African Americans were taking the shots.

“We thought, maybe if they see us involved, we can reach some of our community’s African American residents who have been reluctant to take the shot,” said Sharon Gunter, with the Wichita Black Nurses.

Gunter says they recognize the there is an issue of trust about vaccinations in the Black community that must be overcome and they hope their presence will help suppress some of those concerns.

In addition, also offering the vaccinations in the community can help make it easier for improved access for individuals with limited transportation. It’s much easier for individuals to get to these clinics, based in the community where they live, than it is for them to get downtown to the mass vaccine center.

In addition, scheduling the shots is easier for these community-based clinics, with fewer members of the community having computers and access to the internet.

“Sixty-five and older, 30% of them don’t have computers, and if they have a computer, they’re not sure how to go online and schedule an appointment, and then they have to print a voucher of some sort, and even fewer of them have a printer,” said Thompson. “All we say you have to do is call the line at the church, and we say you can come. All we need is your name and number, so we can get a list of who’s coming. We ask them to let us have their email number, and a lot of us have given them to us.

For those who have email, the nurses are emailing them confirmation of their appointment.

Wichita Black Nurses, in conjunction with the Sedgwick County Health Department have completed two successful community-based COVID-19 vaccine clinics for individuals and they’re set to do more.

The first two clinics held on consecutive Sundays at St. James Missionary Baptist Church and Tabernacle Bible Church filled up quickly. At St James, the nurses vaccinated 144 individuals, and at Tabernacle, they planned to vaccinate 150, but were scheduled for 165.

Their next two vaccination clinics scheduled to date are:

Tues., March 23, 2-6 p.m. at Saint Mark United Methodist Church, 1525 N. Lorraine, Wichita and

Sun., April 11, 1-5 p.m. at Saint Mary’s Baptist Church, 1648 E. 17th St. N., Wichita.

Vaccinations will be administered by appointment only. To schedule an appointment, eligible individuals are asked to reach out directly to each of the churches. For Saint Mark, call (316) 681-2214 and for St. Mary’s, call (316) 265-2044.

According to Maggie Thompson, spokesperson for the Black nurses, they are setting up to vaccinate 400 people at each of those clinics. The clinics are not just for members of the churches where they’re sponsored. Thompson said they nurses are depending on the ministers at other churches to encourage their members to participate.

The nurses decided to sponsor the community-based vaccination after seeing how few African Americans were taking the shots.

“We thought, maybe if they see us involved, we can reach some of our community’s African American residents who have been reluctant to take the shot,” said Sharon Gunter, with the Wichita Black Nurses.

Gunter says they recognize the there is an issue of trust about vaccinations in the Black community that must be overcome and they hope their presence will help suppress some of those concerns.

In addition, also offering the vaccinations in the community can help make it easier for improved access for individuals with limited transportation. It’s much easier for individuals to get to these clinics, based in the community where they live, than it is for them to get downtown to the mass vaccine center.

In addition, scheduling the shots is easier for these community-based clinics, with fewer members of the community having computers and access to the internet.

“Sixty-five and older, 30% of them don’t have computers, and if they have a computer, they’re not sure how to go online and schedule an appointment, and then they have to print a voucher of some sort, and even fewer of them have a printer,” said Thompson. “All we say you have to do is call the line at the church, and we say you can come. All we need is your name and number, so we can get a list of who’s coming. We ask them to let us have their email number, and a lot of us have given them to us.

For those who have email, the nurses are emailing them confirmation of their appointment.

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