City of Reading to Provide Free COVID-19 Vaccinations on Monday, Tuesday

Reading, PA – In partnership with the Pennsylvania Department of Health, Latino Connection, Mayor Eddie Moran, Highmark Blue Shield, and Penn State Health, Pennsylvania’s COVID-19 Mobile Response Unit will visit Berks County on Monday, April 19 and Tuesday, April 20 to administer the Moderna COVID-19 vaccinations within the community.

Latino Connection’s mobile unit called CATE (Community-Accessible Testing & Education), which was used in fall 2020 for a mobile COVID-19 testing tour, is now equipped to administer vaccinations through approved medical professionals who will be on-site at each event. This is the first dedicated vaccine mobile clinic in the state of Pennsylvania.

CATE will provide free COVID-19 vaccinations and education from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Monday, April 19 and Tuesday, April 20. Both events will take place in the open parking lot located at 31 South 5th Street, Reading, PA 19602.

On Monday at 10 a.m. a press event will take place with remarks made by Mayor Moran, Jeanette Gibbs of Penn State Health, and Kathleen McKenzie, of Highmark. The media is invited to attend.

Those interested in receiving a vaccination from CATE can learn more at www.CATEmobileunit.com or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/CATEmobileunit. Services are available on a first come, first serve basis. Pre-registration is required and can be completed on the website. Social distancing and masking guidelines will be followed at all times.

“What started as a first-of-its-kind COVID-19 mobile testing and education initiative has shifted into overdrive with the launch of the COVID-19 vaccination tour,” George Fernandez, Founder and CEO of Latino Connection said. “With more than 120 vaccination stops and 100 additional educational events on the agenda, these important resources will be accessible to people in nearly every region across Pennsylvania. We are doing what we know needs to be done, with the resources we have to win the war on COVID-19.”

“The residents of Reading have made their voices heard and want to get vaccinated,” said Mayor Morán. “I am deeply grateful to our partners such as Penn State Health, Highmark Blue Shield, Latino Connection and all who have made it possible to host CATE in our City. Working collaboratively, we have been able to combat resistance, skepticism and misinformation. We will continue working to make Reading a healthy and vibrant community.”

“Even before COVID hit our nation and our world, we knew that certain populations struggled with access to health care, said Jeanette Gibbs, senior vice president for ambulatory services, Penn State Health. “Research has shown that our ZIP code plays a role in our life expectancy. Penn State Health has partnered with community organizations like Latino Connection to take this vaccine to churches, community centers and churches through 15 “pop up” clinics in underserved areas so far. We are proud to continue that work through this important initiative and help reduce at least one significant barrier to access for the Reading community.”

For more information about COVID-19 vaccinations near you, visit the Department of Health’s website, www.health.pa.gov.