Noli Vega, Research Assistant, NY Vaccine Literacy Campaign, CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy
Hannah Stuart Lathan, MPH, Program Manager, NY Vaccine Literacy Campaign, CONVINCE USA, CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy
Trust is a crucial component to increasing national COVID-19 vaccination rates. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation COVID-19 Vaccine Monitor, nearly eight in ten adults (ages 18 and older) believe or are unsure about at least one common falsehood about COVID-19 or the vaccine. Community health workers (CHWs) and professionals at community-based organizations (CBOs) have an important role to play in raising vaccine confidence in local communities.
When it comes to finding information and making decisions about vaccination, people are more likely to trust sources close to their own networks— health providers, faith leaders, or friends and family—over external sources like government and media. CHWs and CBO staff have the unique opportunity to use their expertise and local reach to help people feel confident about getting vaccinated.
We’ve rounded up three key resources that can help CHWs and other frontline staff provide vaccine education and guide meaningful conversations with community members.
1. 12 COVID-19 Vaccination Strategies for Your Community
Created by the CDC, this field guide provides tools and strategies that public health professionals and CBO staff can use to promote vaccine uptake in their communities, including motivational interviewing techniques and tactics for combating misinformation.
2. COVID-19 Communications Toolkit for Health Centers
Building trust can take time and require a variety of outreach and engagement strategies. In this toolkit, the National Association of Community Health Centers offers key messages, sample social media posts and graphics, and additional resources to help CHWs and CBO staff communicate about COVID-19 vaccines.
3. Answers to Tough Questions about Public Health
With misinformation spreading widely, it is essential that people have accurate and credible information in order to make vaccine decisions. This list of FAQs from the Public Health Communications Collaborative provides messaging guidance on tough questions you might hear from community members, including on topics that are sensitive and often politicized.
Click to view our COVID-19 community resources.
About the New York Vaccine Literacy Campaign
Launched in May 2021, the Campaign was developed by CONVINCE USA and a team of faculty and staff at the CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy. Our mission is to lighten the load of community and direct service organizations by increasing community-level access to vaccine education. The NY VLC provides tools, training, and capacity building resources to community partners. This work is supported by the New York Community Trust, the Altman Foundation, and the New York State Health Foundation.
About CUNY SPH
The CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy (CUNY SPH) is committed to promoting and sustaining healthier populations in New York City and around the world through excellence in education, research, and service in public health and by advocating for sound policy and practice to advance social justice and improve health outcomes for all.