Nina Johnson

Date on Paper


Document Type

Doctoral Paper

Degree Name




Committee Chair

Robertson, Sara

Committee Member

Galloway, Lynette

Author's Keywords

Faith-based virtual town hall; vaccine hesitancy; health belief model; social ecological model; SWOT analysis; COVID-19 pandemic


Background: Vaccines are among the most important public health interventions of the 20th century saving millions of lives each year. Notwithstanding, the United States has seen a growing resistance to vaccinations since the late 1990s. Vaccine hesitancy (VH) is a delay or decline to accept vaccines, despite the available of safe and effective vaccines (WHO, 2019). Combatting VH in Black communities is especially challenging, complex, and multifaceted due to an elevated sense of medical mistrust from persistent racial discrimination, injustices and medical malfeasance. The current coronavirus-19 disease (COVID-19) pandemic has further magnified the intersection of this structural racism, the associated social risk factors, and health. Purpose: The purpose of the program evaluation was to determine the success of the Louisville Metro Dept. of Public Health & Wellness (LMDPHW) social media educational event, geared to decrease VH and increase uptake of the COVID-19 vaccine in the Black community. Method: The campaign combined faith-based initiatives with a social media virtual town hall platform. The program evaluation was intended to assess participant experience, and intent to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. Results: In lieu of poor post-event survey completion, an analysis of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT) of the educational event was performed instead. Discussion: Using a combined approach, many important topics specific to the Black community were addressed. Using social media, allowed for a greater reach of collective ideas and solutions to be shared in other homogenous minority communities and churches geographically. The SWOT analysis was able to add value and guidance to future community health change initiatives.

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