March 9, 2021

A Shot for Every Adult By May, But Does Your Business Have a Vaccination Plan?


3 small business resources to help you take action

Last week, the White House accelerated its vaccine supply timeline with an announcement that the United States will have enough doses for every adult by the end of May. This was announced after federal authorities helped broker a deal that will have pharmaceutical giant Merck help manufacture rival Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose COVID-19 vaccine, and as the Biden Administration offers logistical support, including from the Defense Department, to help move manufacturers to round-the-clock production.

That’s good news for the nearly 70% of Americans who plan to get vaccinated at the first opportunity. Now, state and city governments must figure out how to get all those shots into arms. Businesses can help by educating about vaccines and making it easier for workers to get vaccinated when it's their turn. Meanwhile, as state officials in Texas and Mississippi move to fully reopen their economies this week, retailers say “not so fast” and instead opt to stay the course with mandatory masking and social distancing.

Creating a vaccination plan for your business is a great way to help your workers make sense of what’s happening and get vaccinated as soon as they're eligible. Today, the Health Action Alliance will host a National Business Summit on COVID-19 Vaccines with CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky, Business Roundtable CEO Joshua Bolten and top business and public health leaders to offer you guidance and resources to build your company's vaccination plan.

New Small Business Resources

Small businesses can take big steps to strengthen the vaccine response, building on their trusted relationships with employees, workers and customers. Here are 3 action steps for small business owners:

  1. Communicate with employees and workers about the safety and benefits of COVID-19 vaccines. Our new Conversation Guide for Small Business Owners can help you engage your team, listen with empathy and offer support.
  2. Make a plan to help your employees and workers get vaccinated when it’s their turn. Our new Small Business Guide to COVID-19 Vaccines offers lots of great suggestions, including paid time off, transportation credits, child care or small incentives to workers who choose to get vaccinated.
  3. Strengthen vaccination efforts in your community by offering help to public health departments, nonprofit organizations and others involved in the vaccine response. We’ve drafted a sample email to your local health department to help you get started.

All of our new Small Business Resources are available in English and Spanish.

Business Leadership in Action

Drugmaker Merck partners with Johnson & Johnson to increase production capacity for J&J’s new single-shot vaccine.
Deal celebrated as an example of industry coming together for the common good.

Target, Starbucks, CVS and Kroger among stores keeping mask mandates as Texas lifts restrictions.
CDC recommends that businesses continue to require masks and social distancing to protect workers, customers and communities.

Over a dozen health insurers, including Aetna and Cigna, launched the Vaccine Community Connectors Program to rapidly vaccinate 2 million senior citizens.
“Vaccines save lives,” America’s Health Insurance Plans CEO Matt Eyles said. “Health insurance providers have been working hard to break down barriers that stand between Americans and COVID-19 vaccines.”

The Indianapolis Motor Speedway is offering free behind-the-scenes tours to encourage vaccinations.
Penske Entertainment partners with Indiana public health officials to host on-track drive-through vaccinations bundled with a free tour of the speedway’s famous garages.

A PNC survey released last week found a majority of small businesses see rapid vaccination as a way to boost struggling sales.
Nearly half (45%) of respondents expected the vaccine to make consumers more comfortable visiting shops, and 22% of respondents plan to incentivize employee vaccinations through workplace perks.

Sodexo is empowering its more than 128,000 U.S. employees and workers to get the facts about COVID-19 vaccines through the personal stories of employees who’ve been vaccinated. Sodexo’s #GetTheFacts campaign tackles myths about COVID-19 vaccines and provides multilingual resources for combating vaccine misinformation.

The Ad Council and COVID Collaborative have launched “It’s Up To You,” a national effort to inform and educate Americans about the importance of COVID-19 vaccination. The campaign answers some of the most frequently asked questions about vaccine safety, why there are different brands of vaccines, and how to know when a dose is available to you.

The CDC Foundation, Courageous Studios, WarnerMedia and CNN Heroes partnered with young artists and creatives to launch The Mask Entrepreneurs, an initiative that empowers Gen Z to embrace mask wearing and other COVID-19 safety best practices by serving as ambassadors for public health in their communities. Participants promote the effort through custom-designed masks reflecting the energy and artistry of America’s youth community.