Over the last 12-months during the pandemic caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have issued public health instructions with the hope of mitigating the spread of the virus. Through existing relationships established by an academic hospital, we established weekly community conference calls to disseminate such critical information on the pandemic and allow community leaders to discuss struggles and successes. From these calls, we were able to collaborate in a more intimate manner with faith-based organizations, whereby we emphasized and planned the role they could undertake during the pandemic. Such emphasis was made between our medical institution and various faith-based organizations through meetings titled “Congregational COVID-19 Conversations.” Over the past 12-months, we held virtual meetings with 38 faith-based organizations: 15 Christian congregations, 21 Jewish synagogues, and 2 Islamic masjids. We describe in detail in this report a narrative summary of the meetings. From these meetings, we discussed several COVID-19-related themes that included how to have their place of worship disseminate public health messaging, aid in preparing buildings for public worship, and insight into preparing their regions for aid in both COVID-19 testing and for potential SARS-CoV-2 vaccine sites. This medical-religious partnership has proven feasible and valuable during the pandemic and warrants emphasis in that it has the potential to serve a vital role in mitigating COVID-19-related disparities in certain communities, as well as potentially ending the COVID-19 pandemic completely.
- Community engagement
- Medical-religious partnerships
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Religious studies