Wake County to Host “Ask a Doc”- a LIVE Virtual Town Hall in Spanish

Livestream on WakeGov Facebook Page Starts 7 p.m. Thursday

Wake County Public Health’s community outreach on COVID-19 vaccines continues Thursday, March 11, at 7 p.m. with the second in a series of live virtual town hall meetings. Conducted in Spanish, the event will allow the public to ask questions of local physicians, community health workers and immigration experts to help dispel rumors and address concerns about the vaccine.

Streamed on the WakeGov Facebook page, questions can be asked in the discussion section of the LIVE Town Hall Facebook event, during the live chat or submitted online prior to this week’s event. The informal question and answer session will feature a panel of experts that includes:

  • Dr. Viviana Martinez-Bianchi, an Associate Professor and Director of Health Equity at Duke University;
  • Dr. Eliza Hueda, a Pediatrician and Medical Director at Sneos Health;
  • Beckie Moriello, a board-certified immigration law specialist and attorney with the Raleigh Immigration Law Firm;
  • Elizabeth Cantú, a Community Health Worker with the non-profit el Centro Hispano; and
  • Dr. José G Cabañas, Medical Director for Wake County EMS

Additional health experts will also help answer questions asked via chat, including: Dr. Angelica Glover, a specialist in maternal-fetal medicine and Assistant Professor at UNC Health; Dr. Roberto Rupcich, a Family Medicine specialist with WakeMed; Cathy Caceres, a Physician Assistant with Duke Urgent Care; Dr. Charissa Kam, a Clinical Pharmacist Practitioner at UNC Health and Dr. Lucia Reyes, a Family Medicine specialist with WakeMed.

“We really want these Town Halls to be an opportunity for people – especially those in Black and Brown communities – to ask questions in an open, honest and safe environment, so they can get factual answers from experts who share their cultural experiences,” said Lechelle Wardell, community outreach and engagement manager for Wake County Public Health.

Data from the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services show Hispanic/Latino residents are contracting the virus at a disproportionate rate. Of the 74,599 positive COVID-19 cases in the virus Wake County since March 2020, 23% are Hispanic/Latino, yet that community only makes up 10% of the county’s population.

According to the Census Bureau, Wake County is home to more than 115,500 Hispanic/Latino people. Of that number, only about 4% or 6,345 people have received their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

Wake County’s Public Health team continues to develop partnerships within these communities to help build trust and increase equitable access to vaccines and other resources. On Thursday, the same day as the Town Hall, Wake County vaccinators will head to a church in Apex to vaccinate 250 people from the Hispanic/Latino community in a partnership clinic with
El Centro Hispano, the second such vaccination event with that organization.

For more information on the COVID-19 vaccine in Wake County, including a link to our vaccination request form, visit WakeGov.com/vaccine. The vaccine hotline, 888-675-4567, is open seven days a week and will continue to be available for requests.

Press Release