KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -- Efforts to prevent the spread of COVID-19 are ramping up again across the Kansas City metro. In Kansas City, 38.4% of people are fully vaccinated as of Tuesday afternoon.
The low vaccination numbers encouraged Truman Medical Centers/University Health to partner with a local business for a vaccine effort on Tuesday.
Joey Thomas is the owner of Joey Cuts 180V Barber Salon in the Jazz District. He didn’t reveal his vaccination status in an effort to stay neutral and encourage people to make their own decision about getting the COVID-19 shot.
Thomas says the conversation about vaccines is discussed daily at the shop with clients.
“We talked about it very transparently. I mean, a majority of the guys that come here are Black males. When it comes to Black men having to trust America or having to trust science in America, that’s a hard ask,” explained Thomas.
Niki Lee Donawa, Chief Community Relations Officer at Truman Medical Centers/University Health, says even though the market seems saturated with information, people still need to receive factual education about the reasons to get vaccinated.
The multilingual group at the healthcare system partnered with 180V Barber Salon to meet people where they are instead of having people visit the hospital.
"We're gonna talk to as many [businesses], especially small business owners, because there's an audience there that may not have been reached at some of the larger vaccination events earlier in the year," said Donawa.
The healthcare system is seeing a rise in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations. The trend worries Thomas, who says his industry can’t pivot into something else.