Today, the American Nurses Association (ANA), along with 19 other leading nursing and healthcare organizations launched COVID Vaccine Facts for Nurses, an educational resource to bring “critical, current, and culturally sensitive COVID-19 vaccine information to the nation’s nurses on the frontlines of the pandemic and those caring for patients in every community across the country.”
Nurses are known for their ability to cut to the chase with the health information that matters to the lives of their patients and when it comes to battling the coronavirus, it only makes sense that nurses would be the ones leading the charge in the fight for accurate COVID-19 vaccine information.
Breaking Down Barriers
In their press release announcing the new website, the ANA noted that, as a professional nursing organization, they are aware and sensitive to the vaccine hesitancy that exists in the nursing community. For instance, a survey from the American Nurses Foundation of more than 22,000 nurses nationwide found that the majority of nurses who have not yet received a COVID-19 vaccine–45%– identity as Black or Afrian American. As Nurse.org has reported, there are real cultural and historical concerns that the Black community has faced with vaccines and healthcare, so the mission of campaigns such as this one is not to shame anyone for opting out of the vaccine, but rather to provide accurate education and information.
Of the nurses who have not yet elected to get the vaccine, they explained that their reasons primarily include: 1) being fearful of short-term or long-term side effects (66%) and 2) not having enough information about the vaccines (50%).
With their campaign, ANA hopes to help provide nurses with the resources they need to tackle both of those concerns. And in empowering and equipping nurses with the information they need to make educated choices about the vaccine, the ANA knows they can also help educate and empower the patients that those nurses serve.
“For nurses to be instrumental in administering COVID-19 vaccines, dispelling myths and getting vaccinated themselves, we must ensure that – no matter where they work – they have scientifically sound and accessible answers to both their own and patients’ questions, “explained ANA President Ernest J. Grant, PhD, RN, FAAN in the press release. “Vaccination plays a large role in combating this pandemic, which is why we have come together to provide nurses with the information they need to educate themselves and counsel both patients and the communities they serve.”
What You’ll Find on the Site
So, what exactly will you find on the new website? Well, the The COVID Vaccine Facts for Nurses website is dedicated to providing relevant, accurate and up-to-date information on the pandemic and expert perspectives about the safety, efficacy, and importance of COVID-19 vaccines. The site features:
- Expert videos: One of the first videos you’ll see is, of course, featuring none other than Dr. Fauci himself, one of the leading voices in fighting this pandemic.
- FAQs: The current and always-updated list of common questions include those on how mRNA vaccines work, how a vaccine can be produced so quickly without compromising safety (this is an important one!), and the safety of the vaccine.
- Nurse-specific information: Because the site is geared towards nurses, one of the most helpful resources it offers is nurse-specific information. For instance, it discusses what type of PPE you will need if you are fully vaccinated, what PPE you should wear if you’re giving vaccinations yourself,
- Social-media friendly resources: The site is also designed to be very user-friendly and social-media ready. That means that nurses, as public health professionals, can easily share valuable information directly from the site right to their social media.
- Culturally-relevant conversation: The pandemic has disproportionately affected communities of color and that means that information needs to be tailored to address those disparities as well. The website is dedicated to hosting COVID in Color virtual events that will not only feature a range of nursing leaders in honest and clear conversation about vaccines and questions from communities of color, but also provide real-life nurses the opportunity to weigh in through surveys for interactive feedback and collaboration.
- Job opportunities: The need for nurses has never been greater, and ANA’s website also features RN positions through CVS Health, from vaccine nurses to infusion nurses to APRN positions.
The ANA also assures nurses that the site will be continually updated and address relevant concerns that come up with the pandemic. The COVID Vaccine Facts for Nurses information website is sponsored by Johnson & Johnson, one of the makers of the three current COVID-19 vaccines available in the U.S. The other partnering organizations with ANA on the site are:
- American Nurses Foundation
- American Association of Critical Care Nurses (AACN-Critical Care)
- American Association of Occupational Health Nurses (AAOHN)
- American Organization for Nursing Leadership (AONL)
- American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP)
- Asian American / Pacific Islander Nurses Association (AAPINA)
- Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC)
- Association of periOperative Registered Nurses (AORN)
- Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN)
- Chi Eta Phi Sorority, Inc.
- National Association of Indian Nurses of America (NAINA)
- National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners (NAPNAP)
- National Association of School Nurses (NASN)
- National Black Nurses Association (NBNA)
- National Coalition of Ethnic Minority Nurse Associations (NCEMNA)
- Nurses Who Vaccinate
- Philippine Nurses Association of America (PNAA)
- Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing (Sigma)
- Transcultural Nursing Society (TNS)