Alliance for Better Health Launches COVID-19 Vaccine Community Outreach Initiative in New York’s Capital Region

Alliance for Better Health Launches COVID-19 Vaccine Community Outreach Initiative in New York’s Capital Region




Alliance for Better Health Launches COVID-19 Vaccine Community Outreach Initiative in New York’s Capital Region

The street team is part of a unique shared investment initiative with six of the region’s leading health organizations

TROY, N.Y., May 06, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Alliance for Better Health (Alliance) today unveiled a boots-on-the-ground community outreach initiative to share information on COVID-19 vaccine safety and availability and to facilitate vaccine appointments in New York’s Capital Region. The “street team” initiative was collaboratively funded by Alliance and five of the region’s leading health organizations, which have been working together since January to ensure an equitable vaccine rollout.

The street outreach team aims to register residents for the COVID-19 vaccine through community-specific, culturally-relevant engagement. The effort will be led by trusted community messengers trained by Alliance to disseminate information about vaccine availability and registration, mitigate common myths and misconceptions, and connect individuals to credible resources. In line with Alliance’s mission to build health equity, the street outreach team is leveraging data to prioritize these efforts in communities with lower vaccination rates.

This initiative comes on the heels of the implementation of a COVID-19 vaccine pre-registration tool, created by Alliance to infuse equity into the vaccine delivery system. The tool streamlines the vaccine registration process by texting, emailing, or calling residents directly with appointment opportunities. Alliance worked closely with Albany County Executive Daniel McCoy, City of Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan, Albany County Health Commissioner Elizabeth Whalen, and the Albany Medical Center-led Capital Region Vaccine Network, to encourage the widespread use of the tool and host over 40 local pop-up clinics in addition to existing mass vaccination sites. More than 40,000 of the 47,000 individuals who pre-registered have successfully received a vaccine to date.

Both the street team and pre-registration tool were funded through a novel financial model, Collaborative Approach to Public Goods Investments (CAPGI), where a trusted broker (like Alliance) convenes a group of stakeholders to invest in an initiative with community-wide benefits, such as widespread vaccination against COVID-19. Under the CAPGI model, Alliance matched equal investments from four regional health plans (CDPHP, MVP Health Care, Highmark BlueShield of Northeastern New York, and Fidelis Care) and one hospital system (St. Peter’s Health Partners) to bring these initiatives to life.

“The urgency of the COVID-19 crisis catalyzed this collaboration, but it would not have happened so quickly without the deep-rooted trust and connections Alliance has built within the region,” said Len Nichols, PhD, creator of the CAPGI model and non-resident fellow at the Health Policy Center at the Urban Institute. “The success of the vaccine pre-registration tool underscores the tangible impact that CAPGI can have on communities and paves the way for continued collaboration toward the shared goal of creating healthier, happier lives.”

To pre-register or learn more about the COVID-19 vaccine, visit www.518c19.com, CapitalRegionVAX.org, or text your zip code to GETVAX (for English) or VACUNA (for Spanish).

About Alliance for Better Health
Alliance for Better Health (Alliance) engages medical, behavioral, and social service providers in developing innovative solutions to promote the health of people and communities, with a goal of transforming the care delivery system into one that incentivizes health and prevention. Established in 2015, Alliance and its daughter entity, Healthy Alliance IPA, collaborate with community partners to address social needs―food insecurity, housing assistance, benefits navigation―before they turn into costly medical problems. With more than 100 partner organizations across a six-county area in New York’s Tech Valley and Capital Region, Alliance prioritizes building health equity for all.

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