Jordana Vera walks the streets of Springfield to help educate locals on COVID-19 vaccines, as part of a door-to-door effort by the health department. (Photo by Jym Wilson)

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The Springfield-Greene County Health Department’s COVID-19 call center now offers Spanish language services to people who call in search of information about vaccination opportunities. 

Callers who press 3 after dialing the call center at 417-874-1211 will be connected to a Spanish-speaking team member. The team member can answer callers’ questions about the COVID-19 virus and vaccine, and help them book testing or vaccination appointments.

Anyone who receives the first or second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at a Springfield-Greene County Health Department vaccination event will receive a $50 gift card while supplies last. Visit the health department’s website to learn more about vaccination opportunities.

In a recent Daily Citizen story about the health department’s efforts to address vaccination hesitancy, community health advocate Jordana Vera said that many unvaccinated members of Springfield’s Latino community have harbored concerns that the vaccine could be used as a tracking device.

The reason: a tracking chip plays into fears of people who are or who know undocumented citizens, said Vera, who co-founded the nonprofit Alliance for Leadership, Advancement and Success to improve Latino students’ access to higher education. Vera tells people with those concerns that if someone wanted to find you, they could have used your smartphone signal to do it already. But she said she understands that “probably 90 percent” of your decisions — from scheduling vaccinations to grocery runs — are based on avoiding attention if you don’t have your documents.

The health department’s press release about the Spanish-speaking call center option is reprinted in full below:

El centro de llamadas del Departamento de Salud del Condado de Springfield-Greene ahora ofrece sus servicios en español

El Departamento de Salud del Condado de Springfield-Greene se complace en anunciar que el Centro de Llamadas COVID-19 ahora ofrece servicios en español a la comunidad.

Este nuevo servicio se puede utilizar comunicándose con el 417-874-1211 y presionando el número 3. En ese momento, las personas que llaman se conectarán con un miembro del equipo que habla español y que puede responder preguntas relacionadas con COVID-19, brindarles información sobre las próximas oportunidades de vacunación y reservar citas para hacerse la prueba del COVID-19. El Centro de Llamadas COVID-19 se ha convertido en una función vital de la respuesta del Departamento de Salud durante la pandemia.

Con la nueva incorporación de servicios en español, más personas podrán obtener información sobre los servicios de vacunación y pruebas de COVID-19 que se ofrecen para que puedan protegerse mejor a sí mismos, a sus seres queridos y a su comunidad.

Cualquier persona que reciba una primera o segunda dosis de la vacuna COVID-19 en un evento de vacunación del Departamento de Salud del Condado de Springfield-Greene recibirá una tarjeta de regalo de $50 hasta agotar existencias.

Cory Matteson

Cory Matteson moved to Springfield in 2022 to join the team of Daily Citizen journalists and staff eager to launch a local news nonprofit. He returned to the Show-Me State nearly two decades after graduating from the University of Missouri-Columbia. Prior to arriving in Springfield, he worked as a reporter at the Lincoln Journal Star and Casper Star-Tribune. More by Cory Matteson