Vaccine Forms Changed to Lessen Fears Among Undocumented Tulsans

Apr 21, 2021

Credit American Academy of Pediatrics

The Tulsa Health Department is adding the word "optional" next to the social security number field on its vaccine forms.

Leadership Tulsa Director of Programs Marcia Bruno-Todd said the change comes at encouragement from Hispanic Leadership Institute students who want more undocumented residents to get vaccinated.

"It was a win," said Bruno-Todd. "This is, if anything, proof of what happens when community members are at the table to develop strategies or iniatives. Oftentimes, when things are done without community at the center, there are unfortunate ramifications and perhaps wasted resources.

"We talk about this in our class and they got to see it in real life."

THD Manager of Clinical Services Ellen Niemitalo said the health department hasn't required a Social Security number to get vaccinated, but this change makes it clear.

The department will start using the new forms once it runs out of the approximately 10,000 forms in supply.