In 2022, the New Orleans Health Department (NOHD) was selected to participate in NACCHO’s CDC-funded Equipping Local Health Departments to Address Vaccine Hesitancy project. This project provided funding for three local health departments (LHDs) to hire a consultant, conduct CDC’s Rapid Community Assessment (RCA) to better understand vaccine hesitancy, and develop a plan to increase vaccine uptake in selected communities.
As part of their RCA, NOHD conducted a ‘barriers for behavior change’ analysis to learn the underlying determinants of vaccine hesitancy within the target population. They selected three areas of the city with low COVID-19 and flu vaccination rates as their target population. Using the barrier analysis as their frame, they utilized community health workers to collect over 270 questionnaires to identify barriers to vaccine uptake.
After analyzing the data from the questionnaires, New Orleans found that perceived action efficacy, perceived social acceptability, and perceived negative and positive consequences were the strongest determinants of behavior change in their assessed populations. Using this information NOHD is now developing a plan to influence a change in these determinants, including adjusting their messaging and education efforts to promote personal benefits.
For more information and details about how NOHD conducted the RCA/barrier analysis and their results, please review their case study here.