New resources for health workers on addressing vaccine hesitancy and generating demand

April 29, 2021   |   Vietnam

WASHINGTON, D.C. — April 28, 2021 — The Learning Network for Countries in Transition (LNCT) — implemented by Results for Development (R4D) — has developed a series of tools and resources that can help immunization program managers and other health workers in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) address vaccine hesitancy issues and generate vaccine demand and empathy among vulnerable groups. They include: two vaccine case studies and an online course with three e-learning modules.

As vaccine hesitancy has spread across the globe in recent years, many middle-income countries transitioning from support from Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, have expressed concern about growing signs of vaccine hesitancy or declining demand for immunization in pockets of their populations and across social media. The COVID-19 pandemic has shown their concerns to be well-founded, with nearly all countries in the LNCT network are now reporting seeing hesitancy for the first time, or that their existing hesitancy has grown far more concerning.

“LNCT aims to offer practical, tailored support to immunization program managers to help them implement effective, evidence-based communications and demand-generation activities, recognizing that hesitancy does not look the same everywhere and that our responses must be adaptable as well,” said Leah Ewald, program officer at R4D. “LNCT’s resource offerings benefit from the rich experiences of LNCT member countries that have been addressing hesitancy for several years and are willing to share what they have learned about building demand.”

Video case studies on building vaccine demand and empathy

LNCT, in partnership with Common Thread, has launched two new video case studies on vaccine demand in Vietnam that present an exemplary model of how to engage vulnerable and marginalized communities. The stories detail the immunization journeys of young mothers, Cha and Do, in the H’mong community of Yên Bái Province. The films are available for any country to use for their own health worker trainings on communications, demand generation and assessing the barriers to immunization, and can be accessed along with LNCT’s trainers’ discussion guide in English, French, Portuguese, and Russian on the LNCT website here.

When developing these video case studies, LNCT reflected on the value of stories — both listening to and telling them — in an era of vaccine hesitancy and shared some of their thoughts on the power of storytelling in this recent companion blog.

E-learning modules on building immunization demand

LNCT and Common Thread also co-developed an online course, “Designing Behavioural Strategies for Immunization,” that ministries of health and other health managers can use to build their skills around identifying barriers to immunization demand and designing interventions to address them. The course includes the following three modules:

The e-learning modules are free and available in English, French, Portuguese, and Russian. Access the modules by clicking here and creating an account.

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