Are COVID-19 Vaccines Free for Children?



Latino and Black parents were less likely than White parents to say they felt their child was “very safe” from COVID-19 when they were at school, according to a recent study.  How can you protect your children?   Vaccines are the best way to protect yourself and your children against the worst outcomes of the virus – and COVID-19 vaccines are available and free for children!  Let’s explore how “You’re Covered” against COVID-19!  COVID-19 Vaccine Recommendations for Children  As of Sept. 12, 2023, CDC recommends that everyone ages 5 and older get one dose of an updated COVID-19 vaccine to protect against serious illness from COVID-19.  CDC recommends the 2023-2024 updated COVID-19 vaccines: Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, or Novavax, to protect against ...

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How You Can “Come Home Covered” This Holiday Season


come home covered Multi-ethnic family exchanging presents during Christmas party at home. Young kid daughter receive gift from senior grandparent while having dinner to celebrate holiday Thanksgiving on dining table.

This holiday season, as many of us prepare to celebrate with friends and familia, it is important to do all we can to stay healthy and protect against COVID-19. To prevent severe illness, vaccines are still our best tool. The good news is: You’re covered! Updated COVID-19 vaccines are now available and remain free of cost to you! See how you can “Come Home Covered” against COVID-19 during the holidays! Should We Worry about COVID-19? COVID-19 has not gone away. U.S. Latinos continue to suffer a disproportionate share of cases. Also, CDC data shows that the percentages of positive tests, hospitalizations, and deaths have increased from October 2023 to December 2023. With holiday celebrations upon us, it’s crucial that people and their loved ones are up to date ...

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You’re Covered: How to Get a Free COVID-19 Vaccine!



U.S. Latinos continue to suffer a disproportionate share of COVID-19 cases.  This not only interrupts important parts of our daily lives, but also put people at risk of serious illness and death.  Staying up to date with your COVID-19 vaccine is the best way to protect yourself and your familia against the worst outcomes of COVID-19.  But who should get the vaccine? Are they free? Where?  Let’s explore how “You’re Covered” against COVID-19!  Are COVID-19 Vaccines Free?  Yes.  COVID-19 vaccines continue to be available to everyone in the United States free of cost, according to the COVID-19 Vaccine Education and Equity Project.  Salud America! at UT Health San Antonio is partner in the project’s “You’re Covered” campaign.  “You may have ...

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Latino Families Still Facing Childcare Disruptions Due to COVID-19



Latino families with children are still experiencing COVID-19 pandemic-related disruptions to their childcare arrangements, according to a new data analysis from the National Research Center on Hispanic Children and Families (NRCHCF).   Childcare disruptions are defined as the inability of any children in a household to attend a care arrangement because of closure, lack of availability or affordability, or safety concerns.  From summer 2021 to summer 2022, these childcare disruptions remained prevalent among Latino households with children younger than 12, particularly those with children younger than 5, according to the NRCHCF analysis. Let’s explore these disruptions brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic and how it continues to impact Latino families today.    The State ...

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Do You Know the CDC’s New COVID-19 Vaccine Recommendations?



The CDC recently announced updated COVID-19 vaccination recommendations. The update allows people ages 65 and older or immunocompromised to get an additional updated bivalent vaccine dose at least four months after their initial bivalent dose. “If you’re in this group and have questions about getting an additional COVID-19 vaccine dose, you should consult your healthcare provider,” according to Public Health Communications Collaborative. Read more about the updated vaccine recommendations and why they matter for Latinos. The Updated COVID-19 Vaccine Recommendations Other changes made by the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices include: Monovalent (original) mRNA COVID-19 vaccines will no longer be recommended for use in the United States. CDC ...

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Child Literacy Concerns Following COVID-19 Pandemic


Little girl reading

COVID-19 certainly hurt the health of many, including Latinos. But the pandemic is also threatening the education of children, amid three years of school shutdowns, isolation, and continuing waves of cases. Many students are falling behind in reading, especially. In 2022, the average reading score at both 4th and 8th grade decreased by 3 points compared to 2019, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. The National Assessment for Education Progress (NEAP), further highlights that while average 4th grade reading scores in 2022 were higher for Asian/Pacific Islander, Black, Latino, and White students, Latino and Black students still had lower reading average scores than White students. Let’s examine the literacy issues children face, the factors that ...

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Study: COVID-19 Has Scary Impact on Young Brains



The rise of COVID-19 worsened daily life for Latinos and many others in areas like healthcare, housing, income, and food access. Stress and anxiety are other grim outcomes of the pandemic, especially for youth. Following COVID-19-fueled school shutdowns and social isolation, adolescents experienced more symptoms of anxiety and depression and greater internalizing problems than before the pandemic, according to a new study funded by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). The brains of teens and young adults were also deeply impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. “In addition to replicating prior findings that the COVID-19 pandemic adversely affected adolescents’ mental health, this study showed that the pandemic may have physically aged their brains,” according to ...

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Long COVID: What Is Known & How Is It Impacting Latinos?


Man experiencing long COVID symptoms.

When COVID-19 first struck America in 2020, Latinos were deeply affected. Not only did the pandemic create high rates of infection, hospitalization, and death among Latinos, it also worsened historical health inequities, from access to healthcare and vaccinations to food insecurity, housing issues, and misinformation. Today, as new variants continue to arise, an unresolved threat has emerged – Long COVID. Let’s analyze the lingering symptoms of Long COVID-19 and how it impacts Latinos today. What is Long COVID? The Department of Health and Human Services, the CDC, and other partners have worked to define “long COVID” or “post-COVID conditions.” “In April 2020, shortly after the beginning of the pandemic, anecdotal reports from patients started to emerge that ...

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How Health Confianza is Improving Health Literacy in San Antonio



Health literacy is defined by the CDC as “the degree to which individuals have the capacity to obtain, process, and understand basic health information and services needed to make appropriate health decisions.” In today’s world, health literacy is crucial for community members and health professionals, alike, to make everyday decisions and achieve health equity. However, many underserved and racial/ethnic communities around the country face barriers to health equity including access to health care, financial instability, and housing/transportation insecurity endangering their health. That is why Jason Rosenfeld, DrPH, MPH, and Melanie Stone, DrPH (c), MPH, MEd are helping build Health Confianza – a partnership between UT Health San Antonio, The University of Texas San ...

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