Since three coronavirus vaccines received emergency use authorization from the FDA early in 2021, the question of how to get a high percentage of the population vaccinated has haunted public health officials. As hospitals across the country fill with severely ill COVID-19 patients, the vast majority of whom are unvaccinated, the question remains.
A funeral home in North Carolina is taking a unique tack in advocating for vaccinations, one that's striking and to-the-point.
A truck advertised as Wilmore Funeral Home drove around Bank of America Stadium before the Carolina Panthers football game in Charlotte over the weekend, and it had a simple message: "Don't get vaccinated."
This Wilmore Funeral Home truck made laps around Bank of America Stadium before the Panthers game in Charlotte this… https://t.co/2dYMFdtmOd— MeidasTouch.com (@MeidasTouch.com) 1632078175.0
That message wouldn't be fitting from any other business, but from a funeral home, it's a morbidly appropriate joke. If you don't get vaccinated, they'll get more business. Blunt, but perhaps effective.
If you go to the Wilmore Funeral Home website, it's simply a landing page that says, "Get vaccinated. If not, see you soon." Again, blunt. If you click the "Get vaccinated" box, the page takes you to the StarMed Healthcare website where you can find places to get vaccinated in the Charlotte area.
According to the Charlotte Observer, the identity behind the truck is a mystery. There is no Wilmore Funeral Home, and StarMed Healthcare said it isn't behind it.
"If this saves one person's life by getting vaccinated, I'm 100% for it," Dr. Arin Piramzadian, chief medical officer at StarMed Healthcare, told the Observer.
"We know that 99% of people who are ending up in the hospital and dying are unvaccinated," Piramzadian said. "If that statistic does not scare people... I'm not sure what does. Perhaps a dark humor aspect such as this one does catch someone's attention."
It's hard to say what will convince people at this point, since asking nicely and asking not so nicely doesn't seem to be working, and loud and proud misinformation mongers seem to drown out legitimate educational efforts. Maybe seeing statistics from hospitals showing how many more unvaccinated patients are in the ICU will convince people. Or maybe seeing a funeral truck with an invitation to bring them more business will do it.
Either way, clever move. Well done, whoever you are.
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