Milwaukee, Wisc. — August 13, 2021 — On August 11, a combination of three trusted Black doctors who are important heroes and sheroes teamed up with Creative Marketing Resources (CMR) for a live, national forum to share valuable COVID-19 information with a group that included more than 230 Black media partners, groups, and individuals. During this live event, these Black messengers amplified their insights, updated information, and dispelled myths about the vaccines and the variants while encouraging more Black Americans to get vaccinated and defeat the virus.
Dragoiu, a White House Presidential Innovation Fellow for the COVID-19 Public Education Campaign, Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), revealed that teaming up with Black doctors is an important pillar of the strategy to reach underserved Black communities with life-saving information about the virus.
Dr. Cameron Webb, Senior Policy Advisor for Equity on the White House COVID-19 Response Team, addressed the Delta variant, which, he said, has become a major factor that’s adding to the challenge Black Americans are facing during the pandemic. “I tell people all the time this is almost a new pandemic. If you look at rate of spread, the case rate that we’re seeing with the Delta variant, it is really incredible how different it is,” Dr. Webb added. “There is some good news here. The vaccines that we presently have do still seem to be very effective against this Delta variant.”
Dr. Rachel Villanueva, President of the National Medical Association and Clinical Assistant Professor of Obstetrics/Gynecology at the NYU Grossman School of Medicine, said it’s incumbent for the media to highlight minority organizations such the National Medical Association, an important advocate for Black communities that represents local Black physicians of all specialties across the country. “We’re the individuals that Black and Brown patients have trusted to take care of them,” she said. “And we need for them to continue to trust in our care. We know that the decision to get vaccinated is a personal one. We need for our communities to trust us to have that conversation to allay their fears and to encourage the decision to get vaccinated.”
Dr. Michele Benoit-Wilson, an OB-GYN with WakeMed Health in Raleigh, North Carolina, amplified the recent recommendation from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that pregnant women get vaccinated for COVID-19. Dr. Benoit-Wilson said that every day she strongly encourages her patients to get vaccinated while dispelling any myths about the vaccine. “We know that the vaccine is safe,” she said. “There has been no increased risk of miscarriage that has been seen in women who have gotten vaccinated prior to pregnancy or in early pregnancy. The solution has got to be vaccinating all of us and getting the message out that the vaccine is very safe.”
The panel of Black doctors also answered the attendees’ questions about COVID-19, informing them that (1) getting vaccinated and wearing masks are our best protections against the Delta variant; (2) vaccines save lives and are vital on our Black community’s path to get things back to normal; (3) the COVID-19 vaccines are safe at any point of a pregnancy, including the first trimester; and (4) it’s important to get accurate information and get vaccinated to protect ourselves, our loved ones, and our communities.
As we get closer to approaching the fall season, we still have a lot work ahead of us to defeat COVID-19. Nelson Mandela once reminded us that “it only seems impossible until it’s done.” This is our call to action for each of us to reach at least one person in our Black communities in order to make a difference. Together, We Can Do This! Together, we will do this and must do this!
About Creative Marketing Resources (CMR)
Creative Marketing Resources (CMR) is a full-service, strategic communications agency that specializes in developing cause and behavior change marketing for Fortune 500 companies, major nonprofits, and government agencies.
We are a Black, woman-owned marketing communications agency and one of the nation’s leading agencies for engaging Black/African American communities with critical public health information. Since CMR was founded in 1995, our mission has been to develop innovative, culturally competent campaigns that lead to real and positive societal change.