coronavirus pandemic

‘Promotoras' Working in Latino Communities to Prevent Spread of Coronavirus

A group of promotoras who speak English and Spanish are being deployed into Latino communities that are being disproportionately impacted by COVID-19

Contact tracer with San Diego county

Community health workers known as promotoras are working in Latino communities to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

A group of promotoras who speak English and Spanish is being deployed into Latino communities disproportionately impacted by COVID-19.

The role of promotoras is to connect with close contacts of someone who tested positive for COVID-19, ask them to quarantine themselves, and guide them through that process. They will contact that person by phone, email, or text, and in special cases, through in-person visits taking preventative measures.

"Their goal is to make sure people are in quarantine, stay in contact with them to find out if they develop symptoms, and give them information and resources to prevent the spread of COVID-19," Jose Alvarez, from County of San Diego said.

According to the county, teams of promotoras speak English and Spanish, but next week more promotoras who speak Arabic and Tagalog will be working in Latino neighborhoods and underserved communities.

“These are our neighbors we all know and trust,” said Mauricio Torre, vice president of programs and operations for South Bay Community Services. “The continuous contact is done with the goal of keeping the individual well-informed on the resources and actions to take…to protect the community’s health.”

In San Diego County, Latino or Hispanic residents account for 61.7% of positive COVID-19 cases, followed by white residents at 25% and Black residents at 4.7%, according to data from the county through Aug. 5.

The work of promotoras is being done through a collaboration between the county, project concern international and South Bay Community Services.

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