8. Communicating with the public (ongoing)

Given that the public has experienced confusion and misinformation about COVID-19 and the vaccines from unofficial outlets, we’ve heard from government providers that giving clear and timely information is critical to bolstering public trust.

Without clear communication about the following points, there is the risk of wide-scale misconception:

  1. Side effects: The vaccines are likely to have side effects such as fatigue, headaches, mild fever, or soreness. It is critically important that these expectations are set with the public ahead of time.

  2. Multi-dose: Making it clear that the vaccines are multi-dose will increase the likelihood that patients return for their second dose.

  3. Misattribution of deaths: By definition, at-risk communities are being prioritized in the first phases of state vaccination programs. It is statistically likely that some members of those communities will get sick or die for reasons unrelated to the vaccine. If these outcomes are misattributed to the vaccine, they may dissuade other members of the public from signing up to receive the vaccine in later phases.