Public Health

Johnson County Public Health (JCPH) has been selected as a demonstration site to receive funding from the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO) in the amount of $150,000 under their “Partnering for Vaccine Equity” (P4VE) grant program. The program will enable JCPH to study vaccine equity within Johnson County and use their findings to develop interventions to reduce disparities. The project will look at factors affecting equity in influenza and COVID-19 vaccination coverage among Johnson County residents, particularly among racial and ethnic minority adults. This award will allow JCPH to continue their efforts to address health and healthcare disparities in the county.

The project will kick off with a quick burst of interviews with community members on the University of Iowa campus, enabling the team to get a sense of current attitudes and intentions among this subset of the county’s population. With the support of NACCHO and community partner Escucha Mi Voz, JCPH will perform a Rapid Community Assessment, which is designed to identify populations at-risk for low vaccine uptake, better understand the local community’s vaccine needs and decisions, identify areas of intervention, and prioritize potential intervention strategies. With those important pieces of information, JCPH will develop several strategies to improve vaccine coverage, including creation of a communications campaign, development of healthcare provider practice training and support, and initiation of a peer communications coalition to help empower community members to become trusted messengers to champion vaccine uptake and address inequities.

The NACCHO P4VE grant is funded with support from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Johnson County Public Health is one of 19 local health departments from across the United States selected during this round of funding for the program, which has now included three cohorts of organizations allowed to address vaccine equity in their jurisdictions.