“Community Members Have More Impact on Their Neighbors than Celebrities”: Leveraging Community Partnerships to Build COVID-19 Vaccine Confidence

Vaccines are a strong public health tool to protect against severe disease, hospitalization, and death from COVID-19. Still, inequities in COVID-19 vaccination rates and health outcomes continue to exist among Black and Latino populations. Boston Medical Center (BMC) has played a significant role in vaccinating medically underserved populations, and organized a series of community-engaged conversations to better understand community concerns regarding the COVID-19 vaccine. This paper describes the themes which resulted from these community-engaged conversations and proposes next steps for healthcare leaders.

 

View the resource here.

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Video about Training on Vaccine Misinformation

This video summarizes the Training held in Mozambique on Vaccine Misinformation. This training organized by the Johns Hopkins Center for Communication was conducted by Emile Miller, an associate researcher at JHU based in the United States, and was attended by the Ministry of Health’s expanded vaccination program and its implementing partners.

 

Watch the video here.

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Increasing COVID-19 Vaccine Uptake in Botswana Through Community Outreach and Door-to-Door Vaccination

Meeting Targets and Maintaining Epidemic Control (EpiC), a five-year global project funded by the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), is dedicated to addressing the HIV and COVID-19 pandemics. In Botswana, EpiC is led by FHI360 with core partners Right to Care (RTC), Palladium, and Population Services International (PSI). EpiC was modified in early 2020 to include funding to prevent, prepare for, and respond to COVID-19 by supporting the Ministry of Health to bolster health systems to address the pandemic.

To address low vaccine uptake among youth and the general population in the year 2022, EpiC rolled out intensive community mobilization. The project collaborated closely with District Health Management Teams (DHMTs), local community structures, and district-level leadership to rapidly increase vaccination uptake.

This resource is a success story that outlines the strategy that was employed to roll out vaccines at the community level.

Source: Increasing COVID-19 Vaccine Uptake in Botswana Through Community Outreach and Door-to-Door Vaccination

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Who are we and what are we doing to prevent COVID-19?

The Breakthrough ACTION Mali team presented this poster on the project’s activities to combat COVID-19 at the the 6th Conference of the African Epidemiology Association (AfEA) and the 1st congress of the Société Malienne d’Épidémiologie (SOMEPI) held from October 25 to 27, 2023.

Source: Who are we and what are we doing to prevent COVID-19?

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Rumor Tracking and Infodemic Management in Public Health Emergencies

The overabundance of health information—including rumors and misinformation on and offline—has been a growing challenge across the world. This situation, called an infodemic, requires public health officials and health providers to work even harder to provide the public with accurate, up-to-date information.

This course is intended for risk communication and community engagement program implementers and other professionals working to identify and respond to emerging rumors. It offers an overview of the theory and practice of creating an infodemic management system, including step-by-step instructions, case studies, and links to additional tools. Participants will learn key definitions, consider how to conduct an infodemic landscaping analysis, and select sources of rumor data. The course modules also cover a variety of analysis techniques, strategies for addressing misinformation, and considerations for monitoring and evaluating infodemic management efforts.

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Gender Analysis for Vaccine Response: Toolkit for Risk Communication and Community Engagement Actors

Breakthrough ACTION developed the Gender Analysis Toolkit for Vaccine Response for RCCE actors working with national health authorities and other partners to develop, implement, and monitor a vaccine response. This toolkit provides practical guidance to identify gender related barriers that need to be addressed and identify opportunities that can be leveraged to enable a gender equitable vaccine response that increases coverage for all. While Breakthrough ACTION developed this toolkit based on improving uptake of COVID-19 vaccines, it is applicable for any vaccine response.

The toolkit includes:

  • Evidence on the importance of considering gender in a vaccine response.
  • Step-by-step guidance and tips for conducting a gender analysis.
  • Worksheets to collect, organize, and analyze existing information and make recommendations across three RCCE pillars: RCCE systems for emergencies, Risk communication, and Community engagement.
  • An illustrative gender analysis based on a country’s COVID-19 vaccine response.
  • Additional resources for integrating gender in RCCE activities.

Source: Gender Analysis for Vaccine Response: Toolkit for Risk Communication and Community Engagement Actors

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The Prevalence, Features, Influencing Factors, and Solutions for COVID-19 Vaccine Misinformation: Systematic Review

During the COVID-19 pandemic, infodemic spread even more rapidly than the pandemic itself. The COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy has been prevalent worldwide and hindered pandemic exiting strategies. Misinformation around COVID-19 vaccines is a vital contributor to vaccine hesitancy. However, no evidence systematically summarized COVID-19 vaccine misinformation.

This review aims to synthesize the global evidence on misinformation related to COVID-19 vaccines, including its prevalence, features, influencing factors, impacts, and solutions for combating misinformation.

Source: The Prevalence, Features, Influencing Factors, and Solutions for COVID-19 Vaccine Misinformation: Systematic Review

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Understanding the Behavioral and Social Drivers (BeSD) of COVID-19 Vaccination among Persons with Disabilities in Internally Displaced Camps in Somalia/Somaliland

In close collaboration with WHO, Handicap International adapted and piloted WHO’s behavioral and social drivers (BeSD) of vaccination tools1 to understand and analyze the perception of COVID-19 vaccines as well as the barriers and drivers of immunization among persons with disabilities in a humanitarian setting. The overall goal of this study was to capture the unique drivers of health prevention for Persons with disabilities in Somalia/Somaliland to support evidence-based disability-inclusive prevention (like RCCE programs) and strengthen advocacy for inclusive health information and services.

Source: Understanding the Behavioral and Social Drivers (BeSD) of COVID-19 Vaccination among Persons with Disabilities in Internally Displaced Camps in Somalia/Somaliland

 

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Evaluation of the WHO Community Engagement Research Initiative

The coronavirus disease (‎COVID-19)‎ pandemic has exposed inequities and service delivery gaps in national and global health systems. These weaknesses reveal the need to reimagine systemic approaches to community engagement, relationship development and trust building in health. The World Health Organization (‎WHO)‎ Regional Office for the Western Pacific led a multi-country Community Engagement Research Initiative to fill critical research gaps and accelerate action in mitigating the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on vulnerable populations.

This report offers an evaluation of evaluative action-based research carried out by four country research teams in Cambodia, the Lao People’s Democratic Republic and Malaysia.

Source: Evaluation of the WHO Community Engagement Research Initiative

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Operational Framework for Demand Promotion – Integration

The Operational Framework is a starting point to strategize demand programming for integrated COVID-19 vaccination. The framework uses the core components of vaccination demand to help guide thinking along a strategic pathway that is broad and flexible enough to be applied to any country situation.

Source: Operational Framework for Demand Promotion – Integration

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