View these videos to learn more about COVID-19 vaccine confidence building strategies and for quick tips for communicating with families.
A 10-minute video explaining why COVID-19 vaccines are important for 5-11 year olds and quick tips for communicating with families.
Patients and families feel more comfortable and supported in their decision to vaccinate when everyone in the practice is on the same page about the importance of vaccines, from front desk to exam room to checkout.
The following are points to consider as your practice works to establish a culture of vaccine confidence. To establish a culture of vaccine confidence in your practice, consider implementing the following points.
Develop an immunization policy statement and clearly communicate it to staff and families.
Immunization policy statements can include:
- Statement on the importance of vaccines
- Statement on the safety of vaccines
- Direct recommendation to vaccinate per the child and adolescent immunization schedule
- Links and references to AAP, HealthyChildren.org, and CDC vaccination resources
A sample vaccine policy statement from Immunize.org can be accessed here.
Consider the HHS Standards for Pediatric Immunization Practice which can be accessed here.
Educate all pediatric practice staff to create an ecosystem that is free of mis/disinformation.
When staff understand the science behind vaccines, they are more equipped to impart accurate, vaccine confidence-instilling information to parents and families.
Tip to consider: convene staff and review the science of vaccines (ie, how they work, how they are developed) and available safety and efficacy data of recommended childhood vaccines.
Provide office staff the tools necessary to succeed at scheduling upcoming vaccination appointments.
Tip to consider: ensure the office’s vaccine scheduling system is open enough months in advance to schedule the child for their next vaccine appointment before they leave. With the HPV vaccine for example, the scheduling system needs to accommodate booking appointments 6 months out. Ability to book appointments in advance may be impacted by physician and nurse work/time off schedules.
Keep staff up to date on guidelines, recommendations, and clinical considerations so they are equipped to accurately answer questions from patients and families.
Be empathetic! Recognize that staying up to date on changing guidelines, recommendations, and clinical considerations is hard and practice staff may feel overwhelmed by all the information.
Tip to consider: provide regular updates via email, memo, or text, putting the bottom-line up front to summarize your main points. Consider holding lunch and learns on a regular basis to encourage staff discussion. Use strategies that meet your staff where they are.
Implement vaccine requirements for staff in your workplace to reinforce a culture of vaccine importance.
Workplace vaccination requirements may be an option for your practice. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) provides guidance under Section K.
Understand that it’s a complicated information ecosystem, but pediatricians are credible and credentialed sources to build vaccine confidence among colleagues and families alike.
COVID-19 Vaccine Resources
- Checkout the ‘printables’ in the AAP’s COVID-19 Vaccine Campaign Toolkit for COVID vaccine-specific handouts that can be shared with parents in response to questions or misinformation.
Equip office staff with these handouts.
- The American Medical Association has produced a COVID-19 vaccine script for patient inquiries to help physicians and their staff prepare for patient questions.
- The AAP has a number of practice implementation resources for pediatricians administering COVID vaccine in their practice.
- To learn more about effective strategies for talking to families about the COVID-19 vaccine, see the AAP’s FREE 5-module course Effective COVID-19 Vaccine Conversations.
A quick guide “cheat sheet” providing talking points and their scientific references for addressing common questions, myths, and misinformation around COVID vaccines.
American Academy of Pediatrics