Community Health Worker-Led Intervention for Vaccine Information and Confidence

Challenge

Although vaccinations are one of the most efficacious life-saving interventions, vaccine hesitancy is contributing to the resurgence of vaccine-preventable diseases (VPDs). Overcoming vaccine hesitancy and ensuring access to vaccinations has become even more critical considering the COVID-19 pandemic, as this has disrupted normal vaccine-seeking behavior. Current interventions to mobilize communities to increase vaccine acceptance are particularly important as this will not only emphasize catch-up for vaccines missed during the pandemic, it will also ensure there is a strategy in place to drive acceptance of an eventual COVID-19 vaccine.

Approach

The goal of this project is to involve community health workers, as well as members of the community, in the design of an intervention to motivate vaccine uptake and acceptance in the community. To maximize the potential of CHWs and influential community members, we intend to use a human-centered design approach to develop a four-pronged intervention to implement in Mewat district in the state of Haryana, India. The intervention will consist of the following prongs:

  1. Develop a community accountability board (CAB) made up of influential members of the community
  2. Aim to understand barriers, myths, and misinformation about vaccinations
  3. Design an intervention to address CHW training gaps, community misinformation, and
  4. Ensure sustainability through monthly CAB meetings to allow for community accountability and ensure long-term sustainability beyond the grant period.
Results

After the intervention is implemented, we intend to use quantitative and qualitative methods to evaluate the success of our intervention. Involving the community throughout the design and implementation of an intervention aims to facilitate ownership and engagement in vaccination decisions. We hope that this intervention will facilitate long-term community sustainability, by setting the foundation for community involvement, beyond the period of the project.