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Topic #1

1. What are some examples that you saw used to drive an increase in Covid-19 vaccination rate? (social media, news outlets, company policy etc) Why were some more successful than others?

2. Do you have any new ideas or variations on existing ideas that you think could have driven increases in US Covid-19 vaccination rates?

Student Initial post #1

To drive an increase in Covid-19 vaccination rates, I saw various implementation tactics. On social media, many “influencers,” politicians, and healthcare professionals were encouraging their followers and the general population to get Covid-19 vaccinations, especially when they first became widely available to the public. I would often see commercials in between sporting events or popular television shows promoting Covid-19 vaccinations, like Pfizer for example. I was working at a Federally Qualified Health Center at the time the vaccinations became available, and it became mandatory that all workers received the vaccination. We were told this was company policy and made mandatory by the State of California. Workers that chose not to be vaccinated at that time had a window to which they could receive their first dose, and if they chose not to be, they were at risk for termination. This did make me feel safer coming to work, especially in an environment that was already high-risk, working in close contact with patients daily.

I believe there are many things that could influence people to get vaccinated, however, I don’t believe these ideas are necessarily ethical. For example, if there were incentives to be vaccinated, such as a gift card to grocery stores or extra relief funding. Companies could also advertise other possible health benefits if they could be side effects of the vaccine, for example, weight loss or stronger immunity to the flu (for combined vaccinations). Finally, there could be a task force directed towards “anti-vaxxers” that work toward answering people’s questions about the vaccine if they are skeptical, or debunking the myths around the vaccines and sharing videos on social media.

Student Intial post #2

In efforts to increase the the vaccination rate many different tactics were used to influence different groups of people in our society to get vaccinated. Public media campaigns focus on interpersonal relationships, getting vaccinated so you can visit loved ones and keep them “safe”. The community efforts that encourage families to get vaccinated together for sometime of reward like gift cards, sporting event tickets. There was even lotteries where if one was vaccinated in a certain time frame they could win $1,000,000 dollars or a scholarship to a state university if under 18 years of age. I believe for many adults like myself the requirement for work was the catalyst to agreeing to vaccination. I believe the thought of being without a job “voluntarily” was enough for many to get vaccinated, when so may others were losing their jobs or already without employment due to the quarantine and resulting business closures. For those who wanted to socialize and go back to “normal’ the requirement and proof of vaccination to travel, attend concerts, live shows and sporting events persuaded many.

I think that a lack of research and resulting data is a reason many continue to chose not be vaccinated for Covid-19. There are article and news stories published every few days that that highlight side effects of the vaccination that people are not comfortable with. As the vaccines still only have emergency use approval, it will take sometime to for the public to trust the vaccination where they do not need any mass campaigns efforts to drive vaccination rates up especially since you can now go back to most regular activities without providing vaccination status.

Topic #2

It shows that the graph of the use of leaded gasoline between 1937 and 1986 is similarly shaped to a graph of violent crime between the years of 1960 and 2009. The authors of the article argue that this shape similarity could imply a causal relationship. Do you agree or disagree? What other factors might play a role in this relationship? Please remember to comment on at least one other student’s post.

Student Initial post #1

As we have heard so often throughout our program: “correlation does not equal causation.” In this week’s materials, we simply used the word “association” instead of “correlation.” While association is defined as an “identifiable relationship between an exposure and disease,” a cause only occurs when something actually makes the difference (Kim, 2023). As such, in order to determine if a situation involves a cause or is just an association, epidemiologists often ask: “Did the exposure cause the outcome?” (Kim, 2023).

The graph above shows that the use of leaded gasoline between 1937-1986 had a similar trajectory to the rate of violent crime between the years 1960 and 2009. While the authors of the article argue that this similarity could imply a causal relationship, it is more likely that the relationship is just an association. There are a variety of factors that could influence the similarity in the relationship. For example, the car industry began to really take off throughout the twentieth century, which could explain the increase in gasoline use. Additionally, given that Great Depression lasted until 1939, the graph shows a time in which many Americans may have been influenced to purchase a vehicle given that the economy was gradually improving. As for violent crimes, BBC remarks that “many violent crimes [during this period] emerged due to the rapid technological, social, and economic changes” (BBC, 2023). Additionally, increased rates of crime may have been simply a result of increased reporting. As such, given the variety of factors, it is unlikely that the use of leaded gasoline and violent crime in the twentieth century was a causal relationship.

Works Cited

BBC. (2023). The Growth of Crime in the 20th and 21st Centuries.
https://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/guides/z2cqrwx/revision/8Links to an external site.

N.C. Government and Heritage Library. (2020, May 26).
The Automobile: Social Game Changer. NCPedia.
https://www.ncpedia.org/automobile-social-game-changer-k-8#:~:text=During%20the%20first%20decades%20of,things%20in%20their%20leisure%20time Links to an external site..

Edited by
Maureen Murphy on Jan 17 at 1:06pm

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