Become a Vaccine Hero – Why Americans Need to Prioritize Immunizations

November 10, 2020

Lauren Heberling
Communications Coordinator

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a dramatic impact on vaccines – from a decline in childhood immunization rates for preventable diseases like the measles; to potential diagnostic uncertainties between COVID and influenza, underscoring the importance of getting a flu shot this year; to the urgent race to develop a COVID-19 vaccine. Vaccines are considered one of the most successful advances in modern medicine, preventing 2-3 million deaths every year, but many people still don’t recognize that vaccinations save lives.

A new campaign from the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) is helping educate people on how vaccines build not just one’s personal immunity, but also build community immunity to protect those who may not able to get vaccinated themselves. The campaign’s call-to-action video illustrates how vaccinations make everyone a lifesaver, and its custom “vaccine hero” band-aids help physicians engage with patients about why they are getting vaccinated.

Ohio Academy of Family Physicians (OAFP) President Mike Sevilla, MD, of Salem, OH, is available to discuss the importance of this campaign including:
  • The science behind how vaccines work, including how they help protect the larger community and common misconceptions
  • What people should know to feel safe about a potential COVID vaccine, including the need to rebuild trust with Black and brown communities
  • Tips for how to have a constructive and respectful conversation with family members about vaccinations, especially if views differ
  • Stories about questions he gets from patients and how he counsels them on vaccines.

If you are interested in speaking with Dr. Sevilla, please send contact Ms. Heberling to coordinate an interview time.

The Ohio Academy of Family Physicians is a statewide, professional association with more than 5,200 members, including practicing physicians, family medicine residents, and medical students. The scope of family medicine encompasses all ages, both sexes, and every disease entity. Family physicians provide comprehensive, continuing care to all members of the family. For more information, visit