Private Sector Moves in to Help Vaccinate the U.S.
Even as COVID-19 vaccinations ramp up across the United States, many Americans still struggle to find appointments. As President Biden adds to the pressure on states by directing them to make all adults eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine by May 1, the private sector is moving in to help. This week, we examine how brands are utilizing their resources and teaming up to work toward putting an end to the pandemic.
- Helping Find Appointments: Two major brands are leveraging their technological capabilities to help Americans find vaccine appointments. Facebook announced early this week that it will launch a tool in its COVID Information Center that will show “when and where you can get vaccinated, and gives you a link to make an appointment." Fitness program-finding app, ClassPass, also added a vaccine map feature to its platform. Jeff Bladt, VP of pricing and inventory, explained that “Using the ClassPass platform to connect members with vaccine centers is a natural extension of our technology and a way that we can contribute to curbing the spread of COVID-19.”
- Creating Vaccination Sites: DICK’S Sporting Goods* partnered with Allegheny Health Network to host a clinic at its corporate campus in order to distribute 5,100 COVID-19 vaccines to western Pennsylvania residents. Additionally, the omnichannel sporting apparel and gear retailer encouraged its employees to volunteer to help coordinate flow and stock non-medical items. DICK’S Sporting Goods and Allegheny Health Network will be teaming up again on March 26th to ensure residents can receive the second dose of the vaccine.
- Creating Equitable Access: In another powerful collaboration, Uber and Walgreens are working together to provide free rides to the pharmacy’s vaccination sites. As inequities keep mounting around vaccine distribution, the brands are “addressing these barriers through the development of educational programs with community leaders and organizations, technology solutions that make it easier to connect people with vaccine appointments, and free transportation to Walgreens vaccine clinics among socially vulnerable communities.”
In the past year, companies have been at the forefront of the needs of the American people as the coronavirus persisted. Whether it was supporting front-line workers, protecting small businesses or CEOs calling for a COVID-19 economic roadmap, stakeholders have put their faith in brands to use their resources to help provide relief in these trying times. In fact, almost half of Americans said they have more trust in business to get the United States out of the coronavirus pandemic than other entities. As we start to see a light at the end of the tunnel, brands will need to keep embracing their Purpose to authentically support their stakeholders where they need it most.
Our hearts are with the Asian and Pacific Islander communities who are suffering from the increasing senseless acts of violence, especially in light of the recent tragedy in Atlanta, Georgia. We join our Asian colleagues, friends and neighbors in condemning racism of all kinds. As communicators, we all have the power to stop hate and misinformation. For more resources, visit StopAAPIHate.org.
*Porter Novelli Client