COVID-19 has disproportionately impacted Latinos and Blacks in San Diego County. Vaccine distribution had been lagging too, but now it’s catching up. (Read CBS 8 story here).


Jesse Pagan

SAN DIEGO COUNTY, Calif. — San Diego’s Latino community is bridging the gap in lagging vaccination rates, after community organizations pushed for better flow of information and outreach in English and Spanish.

Since the start of the pandemic, the county’s Latino population has been disproportionately hit. At first, the virus was spreading throughout the community more than in others.


“Unfortunately, Latinos were on the front lines when it came to work,when it came to living situations, when it came to transportation and so we saw the numbers skyrocketing among Latinos very early on,” Nancy Maldonado, President and CEO of the Chicano Federation, said.”

Maldonado added that, in general, income dictated who would be infected. Frontline workers still working during the pandemic were affected more, as were people who lived with relatives in multigenerational housing….

…Dr. Fabian Rivera-Chavez, an assistant professor and researcher at the University of California San Diego has been focusing on vaccine disparities. He says part of the key is to speak about and educate on the importance of vaccine, not just with COVID-19 but also historically.

“We’re close to 50 percent vaccination rates in Latinos, which is way above the national average,” Rivera-Chavez said. “Nationally, in the United States, we’re only seeing about 25 percent first dose vaccinations.”