Grassroots Connections are Key to CDC’s Vaccine Equity Efforts in the Peach State

Posted In: People who are LGBTQ+

two black gay pride participants

Purpose

Administer mpox vaccine doses for events leading up to and during at the Atlanta Black Pride (ABP) events from August 27 through September 5, 2022.

Populations of focus

LGBTQ+ men who have sex with men

Partners

Georgia Department of Public Health (GA DPH), ABP organizers, local health departments, and community-based organizations

Description

In Georgia, Black/African American men who have sex with men made up 78% of mpox cases during summer 2022. As ABP weekend celebrates diversity and the impact of distinctly Black gay and queer culture on the community, it presented an ideal opportunity to put health equity in action. At the invitation of the GA DPH, CDC supported the state by allocating 5,500 additional vaccine doses for ABP attendees.

Early Impact or Lessons Learned

Public health officials administered more than 4,200 doses of the mpox vaccine at events leading up to and during ABP events. Nearly 50% of vaccine recipients were Black, and 8% were Hispanic or Latino. GA DPH’s collaboration with ABP organizers, local health departments, and community-based organizations was critical to the success of this event, as they served as trusted sources to directly engage with and encourage attendees to get vaccinated in a convenient location. CDC and the GA DPH have plans for additional vaccine events so that people who were vaccinated for mpox before and during ABP will be able to receive their second doses and complete the series.