MT. LAUREL, N.J., Aug. 2, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- NFL Alumni Health announced today that, in partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it will kick off an outreach and education initiative to help build COVID-19 vaccination confidence. Rolling out nationally and in 20 NFL Alumni chapter cities and regions, the campaign will feature more than 40 current and retired NFL players who will encourage the public to make the decision to protect themselves, their families and their communities by getting vaccinated.
"As a country, we've done a lot—individually and collectively—to help end the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19," said Beasley Reece, chief executive officer of the NFL Alumni Association (NFL Alumni). "We may be in the proverbial 'red zone,' but the fight isn't over. We hope that the voices of our NFL Alumni will help inspire people who have not yet been vaccinated to explore their concerns with a health care professional, get the facts and decide to protect themselves and others."
Millions of people in the U.S. have received COVID-19 vaccines, which has helped slow the trajectory of new cases across the country. But, despite widespread availability of vaccines and the emergence of the new, highly contagious Delta variant, millions of Americans have not yet opted to get vaccinated.
The NFL Alumni Health community outreach and education initiative appeals to those who are hesitant by acknowledging their concerns, dispelling common myths and driving them to resources that can help them make an informed decision. To date, more than 40 current and former NFL players have agreed to participate in the campaign, including 20 Super Bowl Champions, 25 Pro Bowlers, and 15 members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
"I did my part to end the pandemic by getting vaccinated," said Rod Woodson, member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Super Bowl Champion, and 11-time Pro Bowler. "I understand that some people still have questions, but vaccination is the best way to protect ourselves and others, and reconnect with our friends, family and communities. If everyone makes a personal choice to get vaccinated, we all win together."
"I sought more information about COVID-19 vaccines before getting mine," said Marshall Faulk, member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Super Bowl Champion, and seven-time Pro Bowler. "It's understandable that people have questions. It's an important decision. I want to encourage people to share what's on their minds and get the facts so they can take charge of their own health and help protect others."
"I had initial questions and hesitations about COVID-19 vaccines before I made the decision to get vaccinated," said Jerry Rice, member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, three-time Super Bowl Champion, and 13-time Pro Bowler. "In the end, I made an informed decision to get vaccinated, to protect not only me, but also those I care about."
The campaign will include public service announcements from players, media interviews, a campaign website highlighting player perspectives, answers to frequently asked questions about COVID-19 vaccines and community events – such as player-supported vaccination events held in collaboration with local healthcare organizations across the country. Participating members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame include Derrick Brooks, Harry Carson, Cris Carter, Brian Dawkins, Marshall Faulk, Franco Harris, Michael Haynes, Howie Long, Anthony Munoz, John Randle, Andre Reed, Jerry Rice, Will Shields and Andre Tippett. Former NFL players Billy Davis and Kyle Richardson serve as Lead Ambassadors and Janet Marchibroda serves as the executive director of the campaign.
NFL Alumni Health is a wholly-owned subsidiary launched by NFL Alumni, a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization, to improve the health and wellness of NFL Alumni members and the broader public. The campaign supports the NFL Alumni triple mission of "Caring for our Own," "Caring for Kids" and "Caring for Our Community."
"Like in the game of football, getting in the win column is going to take every individual doing their part," said Bart Oates, president of the NFL Alumni Association. "There's strength in numbers and we're very proud of our members for stepping up and encouraging others to make the call to get vaccinated."
NFL Alumni Chapter cities and regions participating in the program include Arizona, Baltimore, the Carolinas, Chicago, Cincinnati, Dallas, Detroit, Georgia, the Gulf Coast, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Kansas City, New York/New Jersey, Northern California, the Pacific Northwest, Philadelphia, Richmond, Southern California, Tampa Bay and Tennessee.
About NFL Alumni and NFL Alumni Health Founded in 1967 by a small group of successful retired NFL players, NFL Alumni is one of the oldest and most well-respected retired player organizations in professional sports. NFL Alumni's mission is to inform, assist, and serve players in their post-NFL lives.In a NFL Alumni Health is a wholly-owned subsidiary of NFL Alumni, which is devoted to improving the health and wellness of NFL Alumni members as well as the general public, by providing informational resources, programs and services. Visit www.nflalumnihealth.org.