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A Physician’s Guide to Increasing COVID-19 Vaccination Rates

Welcome to Beyond the Needle, a podcast for and by physicians. Sit down with our weekly guest primary care clinicians as we tackle the real-world barriers to COVID-19 vaccination uptake and share our experiences with implementation. Together, we’ll uncover practical solutions to help you and your team incorporate the COVID-19 vaccine into your practice and increase vaccination rates amongst your patients.

Working to honor the struggles and traumas of the pandemic, we will empower the primary care clinician to feel confident in implementing COVID-19 vaccinations so that their patients can receive the vaccine within their usual site of care.

Join I-VAC Faculty and primary care clinicians from across the state as they share the highs and lows of their experiences and lessons learned throughout the pandemic.

Together, we’ll cover topics like:

Pink Checkmark Implementation Barriers

Pink Checkmark Vaccine Hesitancy

Pink Checkmark Special Populations

Pink Checkmark Motivational Interviewing

Thank you for joining us as we come together to vaccinate against COVID-19.


Listen to our pre-recorded episodes and earn .50 credit for each episode. Take a short post test and evaluation on the Illinois Academy of Family Physicians online education library and earn credits for your time.

The Illinois Academy of Family Physicians (IAFP) is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

AMA PRA Category 1 – The Illinois Academy of Family Physicians designates each Online enduring material for a maximum of 0.50 AMA PRA Category 1 credit™

Nurses and nurse Practitioners can submit Certificates of Attendance to their accrediting board to claim credit for participation.

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11. Reducing Disparities & Preventive Medicine’s Impact on COVID-19 (Part 1 of 2)

Carl Earl Lambert, Jr., MD, FAAFP, Christina Wells, MD, MPH, FAAFP, and Marian Sassetti, MD, FAAFP host this 2-part podcast series addressing disparities in healthcare and the importance of preventative medicine in reducing them.  The pandemic has brought the curtain down and clearly exposed major disparities we are still facing.  They invite you to join them as they address these issues with honesty, care, and compassion.

12. Reducing Disparities & Preventive Medicine’s Impact on COVID-19 (Part 2 of 2)

Carl Earl Lambert, Jr., MD, FAAFP, Christina Wells, MD, MPH, FAAFP, and Marian Sassetti, MD, FAAFP continue their discussion in part 2 of this podcast series addressing disparities in healthcare and the importance of preventative medicine in reducing them.  Today, the focus is on the primary care provider’s impact on COVID-19.  They will share what they think a primary care doctor's role is in helping to address and prevent disparities.  Their message is one of hope and the opportunity primary care providers have to make a positive, lasting change in their patients’ lives in regard to their health and wellness.

13. Overcoming COVID-19 Challenges in Different Practice Settings

With multiple types of practices in various locations that serve patients with a broad range of access to medical care facilities and health insurance, there is not a “one size fits all” answer for implementing COVID-19 vaccines within a facility.  Join Corinne Kohler, MD, FAAFP, Marian Sassetti, MD, FAAFP, and Santina Wheat, MD, MPH, FAAFP as they discuss how they overcame challenges as they introduced COVID-19 vaccines into different practice settings.  They share their experiences with rural, city, and suburban locations in private practice and Federally Qualified Health centers (FQHCs) and discuss the ongoing changes and opportunities facing their practices.

14. How to Compromise with Immunocompromised Patients about COVID-19

No one is immune to COVID affecting their lives in some way. This is especially true for people with compromised immune systems and people they interact with. Timothy Ott, DO, FAAFP, IAFP President, Christopher Smyre, MD, and Carl Lambert, Jr., MD, FAAFP, will discuss the additional challenges & concerns these patients may have when considering whether to receive a COVID-19 vaccine. They will talk about ways to prevent getting COVID and treatment options for those in various immunocompromised states.

15. The Importance of COVID-19 Vaccination in Adult Populations

With so much attention in the news about bivalent boosters and trying to keep up with changes in vaccination schedule guidelines, some of the focus has shifted away from having conversations with adults who haven’t been vaccinated against COVID at all. Corinne Kohler, MD, FAAFP, Carl Earl Lambert, Jr., MD, FAAFP, and Marian R. Sassetti, MD, FAAFP remind us of the importance of making certain that everyone who is eligible for the COVID vaccines have them. Join them as they discuss where are we at right now, what we can do now to keep the traction, and what has improved, or sometimes hurt, encouraging people to get vaccinated.


We’re building this series based on the needs of our provider community. We want to hear from you! Send us your questions, concerns, and thoughts on COVID-19 vaccine implementation and our staff will work to address these throughout the series.

Submit Your Questions to the Beyond the Needle Team

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