Developing and Testing a COVID-19 Vaccination Acceptance Intervention (CoVAcS)

VA Office of Research and Development logo

VA Office of Research and Development


Active, not recruiting


COVID-19 Vaccination


Behavioral: Moving to COVID-19 Vaccine Acceptance Intervention

Study type


Funder types

Other U.S. Federal agency


SDR 21-141 (Other Grant/Funding Number)

Details and patient eligibility


The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in significant loss of life and suffering with total case and death counts increasing daily, particularly with the emergence of the delta variant. COVID-19 vaccines have proven highly effective in preventing severe illness, hospitalization, and death. Nevertheless, according to VA data sources, only 56% of all U.S. Veterans have been vaccinated to date, largely owing to vaccine hesitancy and lack of access to vaccination. Thus, there is a critical need for evidence-based interventions to increase COVID-19 vaccine acceptance and access among Veterans, many of whom are vulnerable to poor outcomes of COVID-19. The overall goal of this study is to increase COVID-19 vaccination in Veterans of VISNs 16 and 21 who remain unvaccinated either because of vaccine hesitancy or lack of access to COVID-19 vaccine. Specifically, the investigators will test a COVID-19 Vaccine Acceptance Intervention (Motivational Interviewing) plus Implementation Facilitation.

Full description

For Aim 1, the investigators will conduct a one-year cluster randomized controlled trial of a Vaccine Acceptance Intervention versus Usual Care with randomization at the level of VA Medical Center (VAMC). Usual Care will consist of all national and local initiatives to promote COVID-19 vaccine acceptance in Veterans such as vaccine mandates, mobile clinics, outreach calls, etc. The Implementation Facilitation team will include a VISN-level external facilitator, VAMC-level internal facilitators, and clinic-level site champions to support PACT staff, Coaches and Peers in implementing the Vaccine Acceptance Intervention with unvaccinated Veterans as well as in lowering barriers to vaccine access at intervention sites. For Aim 2, the investigators will identify a diverse sample of 450 Veterans across VAMCs in VISNs 16 and 21, who have had primary care visits at Intervention and Usual Care sites, and who have either recently received (N=360) or have not received (N=90) COVID-19 vaccination. The investigators will over sample recently vaccinated Veterans to describe the impact of the Vaccine Acceptance Intervention on Veterans' decisions to accept COVID-19 vaccination in addition to over-sampling women, ethnic/racial minorities, rural and younger Veterans, and those with mental health conditions. Follow-up qualitative interviews will be conducted in a subsample to better understand factors related to recent vaccine acceptance and persistent vaccine hesitancy. Finally, for Aim 3, the investigators will conduct process and summative interviews with VA staff and providers from VAMC sites in VISNs 16 and 21 with high and low vaccination rates) to learn which implementation strategies were most and least effective.


230 patients




18+ years old


No Healthy Volunteers

Inclusion criteria

Inclusion Criteria by Aim: Aim 1: Primary care clinic visit in VISN 16 or 21 Aim 2: =1 visit(s) at a participating VISN 16 or 21 primary care clinic or CBOC after the start of the trial at their site, and at the time of recruitment, COVID-19 vaccination status is verified as one of the following: has not initiated COVID-19 vaccination has initiated one of the two mRNA vaccines and is outside the window for the second dose recently completed COVID-19 vaccination (has completed two doses of mRNA vaccination or has completed the single-dose Janssen/Johnson & Johnson vaccine within the past 60 days) Aim 3: Implementation-focused Interviews with VISN 16 and 21 Staff and HCPs

Exclusion criteria

Exclusion Criteria by Aim: Aim 1: Per VISN or VAMC leadership, the clinic or CBOC has extreme staffing shortages such that it would not be feasible or in the best interests of patient care to allow clinic or CBOC staff release time to participate in trainings or other meetings related to the trial Aim 2: Has initiated COVID-19 vaccination with one of the mRNA vaccines and is within the window to complete the second dose on schedule (< 42 days since dose 1) Serious allergic reaction or other contraindication to COVID-19 vaccination or other vaccines (e.g., flu vaccine) Currently in hospice care or < 6 months to live No consistent ability to be contacted by phone Participating in another COVID-19 trial or study (research study flag) Moderate to severe dementia as documented in the patient's VA medical record Increased suicide risk as indicated by behavioral health flag Aim 3: Staff or HCPs declines invitation to participate in the interview

Trial design

Primary purpose

Health Services Research



Interventional model

Parallel Assignment


Double Blind

230 participants in 2 patient groups

Intervention Arm
Experimental group
The VAMC Internal Facilitator will partner with the trial External Facilitators (research team and designated External Facilitators in VISNS 16 and 21) to adapt and implement the study intervention to best meet the needs and preferences of their VAMC site. In addition, each CBOC and clinic affiliated with a VAMC in the Intervention arm will need to identify a Site Champion to provide clinic-specific information to facilitate implementation of the Vaccine Acceptance Intervention at their clinic or CBOC. In addition, for clinics and CBOCs assigned to the Vaccine Acceptance Intervention, VAMC, clinic and CBOC leadership will need to agree to release PACT staff for an initial two-hour Motivational Interviewing (MI) training, and at least one 60-minute post-training consultation session over the one-year trial period. There will be additional consultation sessions offered to intervention clinics and CBOC staff, but these will be optional.
Behavioral: Moving to COVID-19 Vaccine Acceptance Intervention
Usual Care Arm
No Intervention group
A VAMC assigned to Usual Care will have no specific trial intervention requirements beyond their usual level of participation in national and local initiatives to improve COVID-19 vaccine acceptance. At both Intervention and Usual Care sites, the study team will perform quarterly "environmental scans". The environmental scan survey will include questions about site specific barriers to COVID-19 vaccination (first dose and second dose if needed), current programs/initiatives in the clinic or local community that are improving or have had no impact on vaccination rates, and the perceived importance that the VAMC/CBOC clinic staff is placing on vaccination (Environmental Scan Survey, in preparation). At Usual Care sites, a point of contact will be chosen from each clinic and CBOC to complete the environmental scan, and at Intervention sites, the Site Champion (see below) will perform the quarterly scan.

Trial documents

Trial contacts and locations



Central trial contact

Nicole McCamish, MA; Yasmin Jolly

Data sourced from

Clinical trials

Find clinical trialsTrials by location
© Copyright 2024 Veeva Systems