Colorado Children’s Immunization Coalition
Recent outbreaks of vaccine-preventable viral hepatitis (Hepatitis A and B) in Colorado’s homeless population have resulted in higher risks for severe outcomes, such as hospitalization and death. Homelessness in Colorado and elsewhere is associated with other high-risk conditions such as opioid addiction, injection drug use, behavioral health issues and other Substance Use Disorders (SUD) leading to increased risks for infectious disease transmission. Vaccine-preventable disease outbreaks in these communities stretch limited public health resources and require increased, targeted, culturally-responsive education, outreach and access to vaccine services in a hard-to-reach population. By collaborating with community-based homeless, SUD and behavioral health organizations, CCIC proposes to address the growing threat of vaccine-preventable Hepatitis A and B outbreaks among people experiencing homelessness by conducting culturally-responsive vaccine outreach, education and free immunization services and by providing linkages to healthcare for screening, testing and treatment.