Los Angeles,
14:09 PM

COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic Pops Up in Watts

Free Vaccinations Every Wednesday Throughout April and May at the Watts Willowbrook Clubhouse

In partnership with Martin Luther King Community Healthcare and Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Los Angeles, Cedars-Sinai is sponsoring a free, pop-up vaccine clinic every Wednesday in May.

Anyone 18 or older can make an appointment online or just show up anytime between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. at the outdoor clinic being held at the Watts Willowbrook Clubhouse.

The vaccination clinics are critical to curbing the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19, particularly in underserved communities, which have seen higher rates of the disease.

"Access to care is a large problem, particularly in communities of color," said Carolyn Buenaflor, Cedars-Sinai associate director of Community Health Improvement. "When you go directly to the community and bring the vaccinations to them, that makes for an easier, more pleasant experience and increases participation."

Kyle Monk, MD, and Jasmine Onyeka Obioha, MD, both volunteered to administer vaccines at a recent pop-up clinic.

"As an African American doctor, I know minority patients want to be taken care of by people that look like them," Monk said. "By administering the vaccine and attesting to the fact that I believe in the vaccine and personally received the vaccine, it gives confidence for patients to actually get the vaccine."

Community response has been positive, Obioha said.

"Everybody I've seen so far has been very excited," Obioha said. "Although there is a lot of vaccine hesitancy in the minority population, everyone I vaccinated was very ready and willing to get the vaccine."

At the April 28 clinic, Cedars-Sinai healthcare workers will be distributing the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. Cedars-Sinai has resumed use of the J&J vaccine following a thorough safety review by the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.