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Partners in Vaccination

Promoting COVID-19 Vaccination for Medically Fragile Adults

Medically fragile adults with low incomes who live at home can have a difficult time accessing needed health care services when they are made available only within the “four walls” of health care systems. In the context of COVID-19, these challenges became especially acute. When COVID-19 vaccination efforts rolled out in 2021, those who were primarily confined to their homes due to their medical conditions had a hard time getting to vaccination sites, and many resisted getting the vaccine even when it was made available to them.

To increase COVID-19 vaccination among this high-risk population and protect them from severe infection, Partners in Care Foundation (Partners) — a home and community-based services organization serving Medi-Cal enrollees in the Los Angeles region — collaborated with researchers at the University of Southern California to develop and deliver a training program for Partners case managers. This program, known as “Partners in Vaccination,” trained a subset of Partners case managers to help them address vaccine hesitancy and to support their clients through motivational interviewing, information, and support. The program aimed to leverage the strong relationship between case managers and their clients to increase receipt of COVID-19 vaccination among vaccine-hesitant clients. Although the project did not accomplish this goal, it offers insights into challenges and potential opportunities to improve the delivery of preventive health care among similarly vulnerable populations.

As California’s Medi-Cal program seeks to expand the community-connected workforce and use of community-based organizations to support clients’ complex needs, lessons learned from Partners in Vaccination could be used to improve other preventive health outcomes such as cancer screenings or the uptake of other vaccines.

Read a summary of the findings under Document Downloads below.

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