INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana is getting $60.8 million in federal funding to support efforts to get minority populations disproportionately affected by the pandemic vaccinated against COVID-19.
The funding from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will help programs such as door-to-door outreach to raise awareness about vaccinations or help people sign up to get vaccinated, The Indianapolis Star reported.
The money comes from pandemic relief funding approved by Congress. Indiana's funding is part of $3 billion the CDC is distributing among 64 jurisdictions to encourage vaccination and access to vaccines for communities that COVID-19 has disproportionately impacted.
“Millions of Americans are getting vaccinated every day, but we need to ensure that we are reaching those in the communities hit hardest by this pandemic," Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the CDC's director, said in the news release.
While Black people comprise about 9.4 percent of Indiana’s population over the age of 16, Black residents comprise only about 5 percent of those who have been vaccinated, according to Indiana's pandemic dashboard. Latino people comprise 6.2 percent of the state’s population and 2.4 percent of those who have been vaccinated.
Three quarters of the federal funding must go to support programs that encourage vaccine access and uptake among racial and ethnic minority communities, while 60 percent must support local health departments and community organizations.