COVID-19 Vaccine Resources for Extension, Education Professionals

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A masked doctor holds a vial of the COVID-19 vaccine in his gloved hand. Photo by Lisa Ferdinando and sourced from Wikipedia Commons.

Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine. Photo from Wikipedia Commons.

Overcoming hesitancy to receive the new COVID-19 vaccines is a growing issue across the U.S. despite more than 400,000 deaths resulting from the virus to date. According to a recent report published by the Kaiser Family Foundation, rural residents are among the most vaccine hesitant groups, with seven in 10 rural residents expressing at least some reluctance to receive the vaccine.

As trusted members of the communities we serve, Extension and other community education professionals are in a unique position to address the issue of vaccine hesitancy using ready-made materials from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). CDC has developed several toolkits for use in promoting and building confidence in the new COVID-19 vaccines.

While the CDC should be considered the main source for information regarding the COVID-19 vaccines, states have been given considerable flexibility with regard to the distribution of the vaccines. Other valuable vaccine resources to reference for both educational outreach efforts and personal education include:

  • You Have a Spot. Take Your Shot. (DHHS) – state guidance and protocols for vaccine distribution, as well as education and communication campaigns.
    • Help slow the spread of the virus by downloading SlowCOVIDNC, the official exposure notification app for North Carolina, as well as promoting the app with DHHS’ communications toolkit.
  • COVID-19 Vaccine Q&A Series – NC State News series featuring university experts addressing questions about the vaccines ranging from safety to manufacturing to distribution.
  • Extension COVID-19 Resources – research-backed information from Extension experts and specialists to help North Carolinians navigate the pandemic and the challenges associated with it.

The most effective education and communication campaigns are often those done through multi-sector partnerships. Don’t hesitate to engage partners in local efforts and help slow the spread together!