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Minnesota launching new drive for COVID vaccine equity

Will begin working with state health plans to reach minority populations.

Posted: May 14, 2021 12:20 PM

ST. PAUL, Minn. – Starting Monday, the State of Minnesota will work with private health plans to improve equity and access to COVID-19 vaccines.

Participating health plans include Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, HealthPartners, Hennepin Health, Itasca Medical Care, Medica, PreferredOne, PrimeWest Health, South Country Health Alliance, and UCare. They will work with the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) and Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) to identify residents most impacted by the coronavirus and face barriers getting vaccinated to connect them with vaccination opportunities.

“Immunizing for impact requires us to measure our success not only by how fast we are able to get the most Minnesotans vaccinated but also by how we are reaching communities at highest risk for COVID-19 who have already been hardest hit by the pandemic,” says Dr. Nathan Chomilo, COVID-19 vaccine equity director for MDH and Medicaid medical director for DHS. “Our Minnesota health plans have found unique ways to support their members’ and communities’ health and this partnership will allow all of us to expand our resources, coordinate efforts to get more Minnesotans connected to lifesaving vaccines and continue to build a more just and community-driven approach to health.”

State officials say the partnership will work to reach those enrolled in Minnesota Health Care Programs (MHCPs), such as Medical Assistance (MA) and MinnesotaCare, who live in ZIP codes with high social vulnerability index (SVI) scores and have not been vaccinated for COVID-19. The health plans will work with the state to contact members and provide information on vaccination, assist with scheduling appointments and help plan for their vaccination, including arranging transportation or other services, if needed.

“This commitment to vaccinate the most at-risk populations will not only go a long way toward beating back COVID-19, but help us close other health disparities that are far too prevalent in Minnesota,” says Lucas Nesse, president and CEO of the Minnesota Council of Health Plans. “Minnesota’s health plans are continually looking for strategies to best reach vulnerable communities, and we look forward to working with the state on this critical initiative.”

An analysis done last year by the State Health Access Data Assistance Center of 2018 data showed that approximately 44% of African American, 39% of Native American, 31% of Hispanic and 20% of Asian Minnesotans under the age of 65 rely on MHCPs for health care coverage.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 611458

Reported Deaths: 7753
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin1267881800
Ramsey53242911
Dakota47375477
Anoka43381465
Washington27752296
Stearns22721227
St. Louis18312319
Scott17735139
Wright16589153
Olmsted13557103
Sherburne1217196
Carver1077049
Clay830192
Rice8270111
Blue Earth772144
Crow Wing690599
Kandiyohi671785
Chisago628254
Otter Tail591787
Benton587198
Goodhue486474
Douglas479581
Mower478234
Winona465052
Itasca463368
Isanti446967
McLeod435461
Morrison428562
Beltrami411463
Nobles410650
Steele401619
Polk391172
Becker389657
Lyon365854
Carlton357158
Freeborn352634
Pine337923
Nicollet334645
Mille Lacs315556
Brown309040
Le Sueur300528
Todd288833
Cass288633
Meeker266644
Waseca241223
Martin237333
Roseau212421
Wabasha20843
Hubbard198841
Dodge19053
Renville184046
Redwood178641
Houston175916
Cottonwood168224
Wadena165223
Fillmore160010
Faribault157220
Chippewa154138
Pennington154120
Kanabec148028
Sibley147410
Aitkin139837
Watonwan13629
Rock129419
Jackson123112
Pipestone117226
Yellow Medicine115420
Pope11406
Swift107618
Murray107410
Koochiching96819
Stevens92611
Clearwater89417
Marshall89017
Lake84620
Wilkin84013
Lac qui Parle76122
Big Stone6094
Grant5958
Lincoln5863
Mahnomen5669
Norman5509
Kittson49122
Unassigned49193
Red Lake4037
Traverse3835
Lake of the Woods3494
Cook1740

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 376815

Reported Deaths: 6122
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk59215646
Linn21567342
Scott20530250
Black Hawk16850320
Woodbury15378230
Johnson1479586
Dubuque13627215
Dallas1150699
Pottawattamie11393177
Story1092548
Warren594392
Clinton565894
Cerro Gordo564898
Webster546397
Sioux520574
Muscatine4956106
Marshall493679
Des Moines481776
Jasper454273
Wapello4402124
Buena Vista432340
Plymouth405782
Lee396958
Marion372378
Henry301737
Jones301357
Bremer294663
Carroll287252
Boone273735
Crawford273541
Benton264255
Washington261051
Dickinson251145
Mahaska235151
Jackson225943
Kossuth222166
Clay217927
Tama213872
Delaware213343
Winneshiek201337
Buchanan197834
Page195722
Cedar194323
Hardin192544
Wright191240
Hamilton189251
Fayette188943
Harrison182873
Clayton173258
Butler169135
Madison168019
Floyd165242
Mills164724
Cherokee162238
Lyon161241
Poweshiek159836
Allamakee156452
Hancock154034
Iowa149124
Winnebago147031
Calhoun144813
Cass142155
Grundy139733
Emmet137341
Jefferson135535
Sac133320
Shelby132238
Louisa130749
Union129535
Franklin129223
Appanoose128749
Mitchell127343
Chickasaw126017
Humboldt126026
Guthrie125332
Palo Alto115224
Montgomery106938
Howard105522
Clarke102624
Monroe101533
Keokuk100432
Ida93735
Adair90132
Davis88525
Pocahontas87022
Monona86731
Greene80011
Osceola79517
Lucas78323
Worth7648
Taylor67112
Decatur6649
Fremont64910
Van Buren57318
Ringgold57124
Wayne56623
Audubon53613
Adams3504
Unassigned80
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