Partnering to Vaccinate San Diegans with a Health Equity Lens
The County of San Diego (County) has built and leveraged strategic partnerships throughout the region to ensure equitable access and delivery of the COVID-19 vaccine. See below for more information about these partnerships to achieve vaccine equity, particularly for those communities socially disadvantaged and at risk for adverse health outcomes.
Community Mobile COVID-19 Vaccination Sites
Making vaccinations easily accessible in all areas is a top priority of the County of San Diego. Access has been increased by working with partners and stakeholders to host no-cost vaccination events at businesses and community organizations in all areas of the County. This program is especially geared toward increasing access to COVID-19 vaccines for employees whose work schedules make it difficult to go to a traditional vaccination site.
If your organization is interested in hosting a mobile vaccination event, please submit a completed form with information about your prospective vaccination event. County staff or a partner organization will review the information submitted and respond within five (5) business days.
Learn more: County News Center Story
Homebound San Diegans
Homebound San Diegans are individuals of any age who are unable to leave their home due to a health condition or disability. Working in partnership, the County of San Diego, 2-1-1 San Diego, fire agencies, and local hospitals have banded together to provide vaccines to homebound residents who are unable to access a vaccination site.
The service begins with a screening by 2-1-1 and if the resident qualifies as homebound, their information is shared with Aging & Independence Services to refer to a vaccine provider that serves their neighborhood. Providers will then schedule an in-home visit. Homebound San Diegans may also register for a home visit vaccination using the My Turn website.
If the resident is able to leave their home but still needs special assistance due to a health condition or disability, 2-1-1 will identify other supports such as transportation and/or a disability-friendly vaccination site, such as the San Diego Regional Center.
For more information or to find out if you are eligible, call 2-1-1.
Operation Collaboration and Other Fire Agencies
San Diego County Fire and other fire agencies have supported the delivery of key COVID-19 response activities throughout the pandemic, including COVID-19 vaccinations. Operation Collaboration was an organized and collective effort among San Diego County Fire and over 20 other departments and multiple emergency medical service (EMS) agencies with the shared goal to vaccinate people in all areas of San Diego County in an equitable way, including the most vulnerable residents of the County.
The operation has vaccinated various populations throughout the county, including EMTs and paramedics, long-term care facilities, agricultural workers, persons experiencing homelessness, individuals who are homebound, and individuals in rural communities. In addition to offering accessible COVID-19 vaccination sites, Operation Collaboration also deployed mobile vaccination teams to vaccinate homebound San Diegans in hard to reach areas of the County.
Persons Experiencing Homelessness
Many persons experiencing homelessness face significant challenges in accessing COVID-19 vaccines. To tackle this issue, County Homeless Outreach Teams, San Diego County Fire and other fire agencies, Champions for Health, Federally Qualified Health Centers and other local organizations have activated special teams to directly reach this population. Utilizing mobile vaccination teams, staff began administering vaccinations to Convention Center shelter residents and staff members in spring of 2021. County Foot PODs, or Points of Distribution, visit unsheltered individuals out in the community and provide vaccinations on the spot. Vaccinations were offered outside Father Joe’s Villages in downtown in collaboration between Father Joe’s and Champions for Health. People Assisting the Homeless (PATH) is working with other community partners to help persons experiencing homelessness access any available vaccine.
The COVID-19 Homeless Sector partners with the Regional Task Force on the Homeless, North County Alliance for Regional Solutions, East County Homeless Task Force, South Region Homeless Collaborative and regional partner agencies to deliver vaccine information through hygiene kits, thus ensuring those hard-to-reach populations are receiving timely and accurate information. These same partners also helped distribute survey cards to unsheltered to help gather information on vaccine attitudes of persons experiencing homelessness.
For additional questions and resources, please email COVID-Homeless@sdcounty.ca.gov
Scheduling Assistance for Vaccine Equity (Project SAVE)
Project SAVE (Scheduling Assistance for Vaccine Equity) assists those facing technology, language, or other healthcare barriers.Working in partnership with local government entities and trusted partners, Project SAVE Community Health Workers (CHWs) and Promotores facilitate access to vaccine appointments and provide referrals to no-appointment vaccination events. Project SAVE promotes vaccination events online and provides resources at in-person community events, such as swap meets, grocery stores, and schools. Project SAVE provides outreach and education to address vaccine hesitancy in a culturally and linguistically relevant manner.
By bringing shared backgrounds, experiences, language, and culture to the communities they serve, CHWs and Promotores are integral partners to reach those outside traditional channels of communication.
For more information, please email PHS_Promotores.HHSA@sdcounty.ca.gov.