District Partners with Black Doctors COVID-19 Consortium for Vaccination Clinics
In an effort to raise awareness of the importance of COVID-19 vaccinations, the Black Doctors COVID-19 Consortium (BDCC) is bringing its team, supported by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the Philadelphia Office of Emergency Management (OEM), and the Philadelphia Department of Public Health (PDPH), to the School District of Philadelphia to provide COVID-19 vaccinations and boosters in schools throughout the District.
The program starts tomorrow with a vaccination clinic for students, staff, and families at Paul Robeson High School, located at 4125 Ludlow Street. The clinic will run from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Tuesday for students, staff, and families. On Thursday, Jan. 20, another vaccination clinic will be held at Robeson for any individuals eligible for the vaccine, regardless of their affiliation with the school. That clinic will take place from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m.
The school-based vaccination partnership will bring vaccination clinics to seven more District schools through March.
“This is a proactive move to help students, staff, and their families,” said Superintendent William R. Hite, Jr., Ed.D. “Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, protecting the health and well-being of students and staff has been our top priority. We have been very intentional about listening to the science and the science is very clear – vaccines are a very effective way to mitigate the spread of this virus. So, we welcome the opportunity to partner with Dr. Stanford and help our school communities stay healthy and well.”
Led by renowned physician Ala Stanford, M.D, the Black Doctors COVID-19 Consortium has been a major player in helping underserved communities throughout the pandemic, first by providing testing in the early days of the pandemic, and advocating for greater access, to providing COVID-19 vaccines when they first became available in 2021 and educating people about the benefits.
The vaccination rates for children in the city of Philadelphia and around the nation are low for a myriad of reasons: lack of access and opportunity, education, absence of trust, and misinformation.
“As with any public health crisis, you must go to the people and this is no different,” said Stanford, who opened the Dr. Ala Stanford Center for Health Equity last year to offer greater access to healthcare for communities that have traditionally been underserved. “The partnership with the School District of Philadelphia will make it very easy for children and their families to get vaccinated and help keep our communities safer as the pandemic continues.
“By educating our students and families we are helping them to make informed decisions, working to keep our children safe, and ensuring that schools can safely stay open for in-person learning,” Stanford added.
In addition to vaccination stations set up inside of select schools, the program will have a Federal Emergency Management Agency-sponsored mobile van unit that the Black Doctors COVID-19 Consortium will take throughout the city vaccinating community based organizations and also non-school district individuals during school hours. The federal support was through a Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Request, from the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency for Federal Resources (RRF), in support of the Philadelphia Department of Public Health, Philadelphia Office of Emergency Management, and communities where additional capabilities were critically needed.
A list of District vaccination events can be found here. Additionally, students can receive the vaccine at healthcare clinics, pharmacies, and other locations throughout the city and at school-hosted events. Additional information can be found by visiting the City of Philadelphia’s website or www.vaccines.gov.