New Concord vaccination site to aid a hard-hit city


CONCORD — Officials hope a new site offering COVID-19 vaccines near a densely populated, largely Latino neighborhood will boost the city’s relatively low vaccination rate.

The site opened Thursday at 1034 Oak Grove Road. It will operate from noon to 7 p.m. on Tuesdays (walk-in doses available 4:30 to 7 p.m.) and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesdays through Saturdays (walk-in doses from 12:30 to 3 p.m.).

Formerly a coronavirus testing site, the new clinic is a mile away from Monument Boulevard, and is targeted toward the unofficial Monument Corridor — a dense community populated largely by Latino residents and businesses.

The site is down the street from La Clínica Monument, which also provides COVID-19 vaccines along with other health care.

Contra Costa County health officials estimate the site can provide as many as 500 doses a day. Currently, the county is allowing all residents 16 and older to schedule vaccine appointments.

“It’s very important if you have kids or a family to take this opportunity to get vaccinated,” said Concord Councilman Edi Birsan, whose district includes the new clinic. “Tell your boss, ‘Hey, it’s important for me to spend a few hours in the morning to get this done.’ ”

On Thursday, workers at the new clinic administered vaccine doses to 80 people — 65 by appointment and 15 walk-ins.

About 28% of the 17,000 eligible residents living in the Monument Corridor have received at least one dose of the vaccine, a Contra Costa Health Services spokeswoman said in an email.

But even months into California’s vaccine rollout, getting residents of communities like the Monument inoculated has been an uphill climb. Latino residents across the Bay Area have been slower to receive vaccines than White residents, despite accounting for far more COVID-19 cases proportionally.

In Contra Costa County, about 52% of eligible “Hispanic or Latino” residents have been at least partially vaccinated, compared with 58% of “Not Hispanic or Latino” residents, according to county data.

Concord, meanwhile, has also lagged behind in vaccinations. Just about 38% of residents were fully vaccinated on Friday, ranking the city 19th out of 31 communities in Contra Costa County’s dashboard.

Concord Vice Mayor Dominic Aliano, whose district includes most of the Monument corridor, said he has gauged a steady improvement in outreach to Latino residents. Organizations like La Clínica and the local nonprofit Monument Impact have done a lot of groundwork in the Spanish-speaking community, he said in an interview.

“There’s much more to do, but we’re in a better position than we were a year ago,” Aliano added.


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