A new COVID-19 Vaccine Speakers Bureau provides up-to-the-minute, vetted facts for groups and organizations throughout the Finger Lakes region—at no charge.
“There's a tremendous amount of misinformation and myths being spread about both COVID-19 and the vaccine,” says Dr. Linda Clark, senior health advisor at Common Ground Health, which is spearheading the speakers bureau. “We want to share accurate information instead so people can make intelligent decisions.”
The bureau offers a diverse selection of trusted experts: physicians, pharmacists, community health workers, researchers, and other professionals who can tailor a formal presentation or informal chats, called “table talk discussions,” to a wide variety of audiences.
Potential topics include vaccine development, myths, and distribution disparities, as well as basic details about coronavirus symptoms. Questions and answers can also be provided to give participants the tools to spark discussion using accurate information.
“National and local research has shown that many people have questions about the new vaccines and that’s OK,” said Clark. “It’s good to ask questions, and it’s important to connect people with accessible medical experts and accurate information ”
Clear and direct information from knowledgeable sources, who represent all communities, allows people to make informed decisions about how to best protect their health and the health of their loved ones, research has shown.
“Being able to make a difference in communities disproportionately affected by COVID-19 is a great feeling,” says speaker Dr. Yvette Conyers, president of the Rochester Black Nurses Association. “Having a Black provider educate community members who are Black can help to establish trust, which we know has been a reason for some hesitancy [in seeking medical treatment] in the past.”
Speakers can address groups virtually or in person, with masking and physical distancing guidelines followed. Bilingual speakers are available.
To request a speaker or to apply to become a volunteer speaker, visit: https://www.commongroundhealth.org/speakers