Starting today, the King Center will operate as a COVID-19 vaccination site for Ochsner Lafayette General.

Coronavirus vaccines at the King Center will be available throughout April and May as Ochsner is hoping the ease of access will help improve the disproportionate rate of vaccinations within minority communities.

According to a report from our media partners at KATC, minorities in Lafayette make up a majority of those who aren't getting vaccinated in Acadiana—a region that the Department of Health says ranks third lowest in the state.

67 percent of those fully vaccinated are white, while people of color are 19 percent of those vaccinated.

Ochsner's vaccination site at the King Center aims to improve upon those numbers and Dr. Cassandra Pilette told KATC's Kendria LaFleur that Ochsner is also focused on building trust within the community through education when it comes to the coronavirus vaccine.

I am seeing some hesitancy unfortunately in our community for the vaccine. I just want to assure you, they're safe effective and will help us combat this virus. The vaccine is not a live virus, it will not give you COVID. There are 3 different vaccines currently available. These vaccines give instructions. It's a program that combats and creates antibodies to fight the spike protein on the virus. So when your body sees the virus, it's going to create these antibodies that will attack the virus.

To get a vaccine at the King Center all you have to do is register and schedule your appointment online. Once you arrive, just answer a few questions, schedule your second dose, then get your first shot.

It's literally that easy.

For those worried about side effects, Dr. Pilette told KATC that's actually a good thing.

If you have side effects that's actually a good thing. Your body is creating that immune response so it can create those antibodies so when it sees that virus it attacks it and keeps you from getting sick.

Doctors say that any side effects experienced due to being vaccinated pale in comparison to symptoms of COVID patients who actually contracted the virus during the pandemic.

See the full story via KATC and schedule your appointment at the King Center here.

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