Financial Times: Delta variant drives wave of US employers to mandate vaccines

By In the News

From Financial Times: Since vaccines became available in the US, companies have focused on offering incentives to encourage widespread uptake. Starbucks and McDonald’s gave four hours of paid time off to workers getting their shots. Amazon offered $80. Boeing set up mass vaccination sites at its plants. Behavioral economists typically believe that such “nudges” are highly effective, said Iwan Barankay, but the uptake has disappointed many employers. The reason, his research suggests, is that financial incentives are less effective at changing people’s behavior when it comes to their health. For companies impatient to bring staff back to their offices, “it…

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NPR: From Free Pizza to Free Tuition, Colleges Try Everything To Get Students Vaccinated

By In the News

From NPR: Purdue is among the hundreds of U.S. colleges that are counting on high COVID-19 vaccination rates to keep their campuses safe this fall. Colleges have adopted vaccine mandates, a few are charging students a fee for being unvaccinated and many are hosting vaccine clinics on move-in days. If all that wasn’t enough, countless colleges are also offering flashy rewards to encourage students and faculty to get their shots. “Incentives really work best when they’re aimed at people who are not against being vaccinated, but they have for whatever reason not prioritized vaccination up until now,” says Emily Largent, a professor of medical…

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Knowledge@Wharton: How Vaccine Mandates are Helping Companies

By In the News

From Knowledge@Wharton: With the delta variant driving up COVID-19 cases across the country, more companies are mandating vaccinations for employees to ward off the economic losses that come from having an unhealthy workforce. Delta and United airlines, Facebook, Walmart, Google, Black Rock, Microsoft, Anthem, and Tyson Foods are among dozens of firms that have announced mandates in recent weeks as COVID-19 cases climb. For the first time since February, the U.S. is averaging more than 100,000 cases a day in what Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, has called a “pandemic of the unvaccinated.” The CDC now recommends everyone…

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The Atlantic: The Vaccine Cards Are the Wrong Size

By In the News

From The Atlantic: When you hold one of the vax cards, you can see how people would immediately misunderstand it as something that’s meant to be kept on your person. Although too big for a wallet, they’re also too small to easily keep track of outside a wallet. “It’s absolutely the wrong size,” Alison Buttenheim, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing who has studied vaccine documentation, told me. She noted that the cards don’t match the dimensions of any other common vaccine documentation she knows of, including the yellow booklet that the World Health Organization uses for international…

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Quartz: What are the best approaches to engage the vaccine-hesitant now?

By In the News

From Quartz: As of Aug. 9, just half of Americans are fully vaccinated against Covid-19 putting the US far behind other developed countries. Whether you’ve personally lobbied vaccine-hesitant friends and family or are merely shaking a fist at the horrifying news out of hospitals filling up fast again in places like Texas and Florida, it has probably dawned on you that there is no silver bullet that will nudge large numbers of the unvaccinated to roll up their sleeves. Instead, behavioral scientists say it needs to be a multi-pronged approach that could include a broad array of tactics, including mandates in workplaces, government incentives such as direct payments, and the…

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The Washington Post: Jennifer Aniston and other celebrities endorse vaccines. Experts say their pleas may not help.

By In the News

From The Washington Post:  Jennifer Aniston is best known for her role in “Friends,” but these days the actress is avoiding some members of her inner circle who are not vaccinated against the coronavirus. Last week, her InStyle interview made headlines after she told the magazine that people have a “moral and professional obligation to inform” others about their vaccination status. “I’ve just lost a few people in my weekly routine who have refused or did not disclose, and it was unfortunate,” Aniston said to the magazine. High-profile stars and influencers can be useful, said Damon Centola, a Penn sociology professor. Their wide…

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The Atlantic: Masks are Back, Maybe for the Long Term

By In the News

From The Atlantic: It certainly feels like we’ve been here before. Nationally, coronavirus case numbers are the highest they’ve been since the start of 2021. Hospitalization rates are on a roaring upswing in nearly every state. Young kids—many of them still ineligible for immunization—are gearing up for another pandemic school year. And even while SARS-CoV-2 continues to shape-shift, we’re struggling to get more shots into arms. The summer is starting to feel a lot like the long, hard winter many people were sure they’d left behind. Last week, the CDC played what probably seemed like one of the most obvious cards left in…

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The Philadelphia Inquirer: ‘Those nerdy girls’ from Philadelphia, all female scientists, tackle COVID questions

By In the News

From The Philadelphia Inquirer: Stoked by fear of a virus that doctors and researchers knew little about, we wiped down our groceries, bought up every last roll of toilet paper, and researched how to make our own hand sanitizer. Alison Buttenheim was no expert in infectious diseases, but as a social scientist and public health researcher, she felt compelled to help friends and family make sense of the novel coronavirus spreading quickly in the United States. “Wash hands wash hands wash hands. Seriously, it’s like the Victory Garden equivalent of how we win this war against #COVID19US” Buttenheim, who is…

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Marketplace: Walmart’s vaccine mandate may be a sign of things to come

By In the News

From the Marketplace: The vaccine mandate movement is growing. Federal workers will have to get vaccinated or get weekly COVID-19 tests. Similar mandates are happening in California and New York. There’s also a long list of universities, hospitals and, increasingly, private corporations that are making the move, most recently Walmart. But there’s a catch: The company is going to require vaccines for corporate employees but not retail workers. Most employers have been doing what they can to encourage workers to get vaccinated. Now, virus variants are helping make their case. There’s a labor shortage in retail, and a mandate could feel intrusive to front-line…

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