Healthcare Ready, in partnership with the Medtronic Foundation and the Center for Disaster Philanthropy, is hosting a series of webinars titled Vaxx Chats. The objective of the Vaxx Chat series is to better educate the general public, particularly people in under-resourced communities, around vaccine development and distribution. These chats aim to help individuals better navigate the flood of information and media related to the vaccine, and promote the exchange of information and questions among healthcare providers and community leaders.
Each Vaxx Chat features health experts, community leaders, and others who serve historically marginalized populations and as well as rural communities. This series will focus on assessing the root of hesitancy within specific communities and the development strategies and accompanying resources for filling these gaps.
Below are descriptions and recordings of past Vaxx Chats – click on a video to watch!
Each year, Healthcare Ready conducts a Domestic Preparedness Poll to examine major gaps in in the nation’s disaster preparedness and opportunities for continued improvement. This year, we asked respondents questions about COVID-19 vaccines to better understand their willingness and perceived barriers to receiving the vaccine. Healthcare Ready’s Executive Director, Dr. Nicolette Louissaint, discusses the reasons driving vaccine hesitancy, understanding hesitant populations’ reluctance to get vaccinated and barriers to getting the vaccine across different groups.
Panelists Dr. Nicolette Louissaint (HcR Executive Director), Maryland State Delegate Joseline A. Peña-Melnyk, and Dr. Kevin Ahmaad Jenkins (Lecturer at the University of Pennsylvania and a Core Investigator at the Center for Health Equity Research and Promotion) discuss new strategies to increase vaccination rates in the most vulnerable communities, as well as issues of access and trust that have led to low vaccination rates. Panelists explore reasons for low vaccine rates that go beyond a hesitancy narrative, but represent challenges around access and trust.
Panelists Lisa Schwartz, Pharm.D., RPh (Senior Director, National Community Pharmacists Association), Dr. Carol J. Neil (Professor of Nursing at Florida State College at Jacksonville), and Bayli Larson, Pharm.D., M.S., BCPS (Strategic Initiatives Associate, American Society of Health-System Pharmacists) discuss the safety and effectiveness of the current FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccines. Additionally, they explore strategies for increasing vaccination rates amongst the adolescent population, as well as getting more parents comfortable with the idea of vaccinating their children.
Panelists Dr. Melissa Clarke (Physician, Patient Advocate, and Author of “Excuse Me, Doctor! I’ve Got What?”, and CEO of the BHE Group a health equity and health literacy consulting firm) and Phyllis Arthur (Vice President for Infectious Diseases and Emerging Science Policy at the Biotechnology Innovation Organization) address the science behind the current FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccines. The expert panelists also had a conversation about centering health equity, especially in the context of COVID-19, and how it can be applied to boost vaccine confidence and access.