Richard Torrez photo via Instagram, instagram.com/theerichardtorrez

published on October 12, 2021 - 3:15 PM
Written by The Business Journal Staff

Tulare County residents can get a vaccine and meet an Olympian at an upcoming vaccine clinic.  

Kaweah Health is partnering with Olympic Silver Medalist and hometown hero Richard “Kiki” Torrez Jr. to ramp up vaccinations in Tulare County. 

The height of vaccination administration came in March and quickly tapered off, but the vaccination clinic on Oct. 23 is an effort to change that.

Tulare County currently has 42.6% of its population fully vaccinated and 6.3% of the population is partially vaccinated. Of the eligible population, though, 32.6% is fully vaccinated as reported by the county’s Covid-19 database.

This particular vaccination event from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. will also include photos and autographs with 22-year-old Torrez, who competed in the Tokyo Olympics for USA Boxing. 

“We are thrilled to work with our hometown hero to be able to help encourage vaccination,” said Dr. Ryan Gates, clinical pharmacist and vice president of population health management at Kaweah Health. “Over 3 billion people across the world have received the Covid vaccine and every day the data on its safety and efficacy just keeps pouring in. We’re seeing that it’s working and it’s safe.”

Gates explained the role of vaccinations in the past to eradicate other diseases like polio, smallpox, diphtheria and tetanus. 

Torrez encourages others to get vaccinated too. 

“I am partnering with Kaweah Health to help spread awareness about the benefits of vaccinations so our community does not get knocked out by Covid. Inside of a ring or out, the fight continues on. Let’s fight back,” said Torrez. 

The public can make appointments at kaweahhealth.org/Tulare. The event will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Oct. 23 at Kaweah Health Tulare Clinic, 1000 N. Mooney Blvd., Tulare. Masks will be required.

“We will overcome this, but we can’t do it without the community’s help,” Gates said. 


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