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"How can I Persuade my Loved Ones to get the COVID-19 Vaccine?

The Los Angeles Times interviewed Dr. Chandra Ford, founding director of the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health’s Center for the Study of Racism, Social Justice & Health and professor in the Department of Community Health Sciences, about how best to reach vaccine-hesitant people, including friends and family

Wednesday, May 5, 2021

Public health officials have stepped up their efforts to reach vaccine-hesitant people, and your conversations with friends and family could be positive steps to helping increase the vaccination rate. But the first step isn’t talking.

“First, it’s important to listen to what their hesitation is,” said Dr. Rita Burke, an assistant professor of clinical preventive medicine at USC Keck School of Medicine. “Why are they hesitating about getting the vaccine?”

Getting the precise answer to that question is important because the vaccine-hesitant umbrella is expansive. Concerns about safety and long-term effects of COVID-19 vaccines are some of the biggest roadblocks Burke encounters in her discussions. Some may decline to get vaccinated for political reasons. Others, especially people of color, may take a pass because they don’t trust the government or the healthcare system.