Researchers find community is key to high COVID-19 vaccination rates in Indigenous communities
University Showcase, 2/18, 8a: The COVID-19 pandemic has hit indigenous communities in New Mexico and across the country particularly hard, bringing to the fore ongoing discrimination in the healthcare system. But the American Indian and Alaska Native population has consistently had the highest first dose and full vaccination rates of any racial or ethnic group.
That’s despite a long history of colonialism that has instilled distrust in government and some medical institutions.
A new article in the New England Journal of Medicine by two University of New Mexico scholars, and researchers at other universities, explores the effectiveness of the Indigenous communities' response.
On this episode we talk with Gabriel Sanchez professor of political science, and the founding Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Endowed Chair in Health Policy at the University of New Mexico, and Raymond Foxworth, a citizen of the Navajo Nation and a visiting scholar in the political science department at UNM. He is also Vice President of First Nations Development Institute. He leads the organization’s research and advocacy efforts largely focused on documenting social inequities in Native American communities, elevating models for community change and advocating for greater representation and responsiveness by philanthropy and the federal government.