On Tuesday, January 26, 2021, the Health and Human Services Facets of the Durham (NC) and North Broward County (FL) chapters of The Links, Incorporated collaborated to host an informative and empowering virtual community health forum entitled, “Covid-19 in the African American Community: Linking with Critical Information.” More than 140 people attended. Presenters included expert African American medical professionals: Todra Anderson, MD, Sandra White-Olden, PhD, and Faye Tate Williams, RN, MSN, MA with Tedra Anderson-Brown, MD serving as moderator. This forum provided critical, up-to-date information on the impact of Covid-19 in the African American Community, the current vaccines, and personal testimonies from vaccine recipients in an effort to address disproportionate rates of infections, hospitalizations, and deaths among African Americans compared with the general population. The panelists also provided insights to dispel myths, address vaccine hesitancy, and empower informed decision making.
A post-forum survey was provided immediately at the conclusion of the forum with 96 of 141 attendees completing the survey for a 68% response rate. 100% of respondents indicated they found the information shared helpful and 72.9% of respondents also indicated the information provided helped them decide to take the Covid vaccine. 99% of respondents indicated their ethnicity as Black or African American. Additional demographics by age showed: 47.9% were in the 50-64yo age group, 32.3% in the 35-49yo age group, and 14.6% in the 65 and older age group. Feedback and testimonials were gathered both from the surveys as well as chat function on zoom and were overwhelmingly positive.
Comments and testimonials from attendees were gathered from the Zoom chatbox as well as from the post forum survey. Comments included “this was amazing,” “such black excellence,” “thank you so much for this forum. I needed this,” “this forum helped my mom decide to get the vaccine…THANK YOU,” and “so helpful and needed.” When queried about what was most helpful, survey responses included “All of it,” “Breaking down the myths and the vaccine info,” “Vaccine comparison,” and “Everything was extremely helpful” to name a few.