Interactive COVID-19 Vaccine Conversations Module for Healthcare Professionals

Illustration that says "Talking with Patients about COVID-19 Vaccination"

Welcome to the Interactive COVID-19 Vaccine Conversation Module for Healthcare Professionals (HCPs). This tool has been developed by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in partnership with the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs.

Whether in your office, hospital, or through a telehealth visit, building confidence in COVID-19 vaccination among your patients is critical to setting expectations, ensuring vaccine uptake, and helping protect our communities.

Before beginning the interactive module, please review the following background information about the importance of vaccine confidence.

Healthcare professionals are patients’ and parents’ most-trusted source of information on vaccines1.

  • Your answers to their questions matter and will help them make an informed decision about getting a COVID-19 vaccination for themselves or their children.

What is Vaccine Confidence?

  • Whether you have these discussions with your patients during an in-person office or hospital encounter, through messages on your patient portal, at a telemedicine visit, or during consultation in your pharmacy, your strong vaccine recommendation is the most important part of the vaccine conversation.

Talking with Patients about COVID-19 Vaccination

5 COVID-19 Vaccine Conversations in Practice: Case Scenarios

Now that we have covered the basics of vaccine confidence and some tips on how to have better conversations with patients, please see the list of scenarios below for animated simulations of what these conversations could look like in real healthcare settings.

During each scenario, you will have the opportunity to choose different responses from patients and see how the healthcare provider responds using the conversation tips provided.

  1. Doctor’s Office Examination Room: 23-year-old male with diabetes, not worried about getting COVID-19 since he is young, healthy, and isn’t exposed to a lot of people at work.
  2. Telehealth Appointment: Recently married 27-year-old Hispanic female with concerns about vaccines causing infertility, consult conducted via telehealth.
  3. Pharmacy: 35-year-old African American male grocery store manager is concerned about being a “guinea pig,” even though he knows that his occupation puts him at risk of COVID-19.
  4. Pediatrician’s Office Examination Room: Early 40s Asian American mom with an adolescent (13 years old), at the pediatrician’s office for her daughter’s routine checkup. She is worried about giving a new vaccine to her daughter, even though she wants her daughter to be able to safely return to in-person school and sports.
  5. Urgent Care Center: 53-year-old white farmer and veteran with asthma. He does not believe that COVID-19 is serious and is concerned about “mandates.”
Additional Resources

CDC COVID-19 Resources

Motivational Interviewing Resources

This resource was developed by the American Psychological Association (Jared Skillings, PhD, ABPP; Erin Swedish, PhD; Robin McLeod, PhD; Mitch Prinstein, PhD, ABPP; and Stephen Gillaspy, PhD) in partnership with U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

[1] Source:  Unpublished research, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases

Page last reviewed: December 1, 2021