RWJBarnabas Health To Host Webinar for the Black Community: Women, Children, Families and the COVID-19 Vaccine

West Orange, NJ, April 21, 2021 – On Monday, April 26, 2021 7:00 pm, RWJBarnabas Health’s Northern Facilities, in cooperation with the North Jersey Chapter of The Links, Incorporated will host a webinar for the Black community featuring a panel of medical experts to discuss women’s health, fertility, general medicine and the COVID-19 vaccine.  The panel will also answer questions families may have related to the COVID-19 vaccine, especially those considering the vaccine for their children who may be resuming in-school instruction this month. The webinar will take place at 7pm and will be hosted by special guest moderator, Robert Giles, MD, Assistant Director of Emergency Medicine at Clara Maass Medical Center.

Panelists will include Stephen Ford, MD, Internal Medicine, Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Rahway; Marilyn McArthur, MD, Obstetrics and Gynecology, Saint Barnabas Medical Center; Arnold Williams, MD, Psychiatry, Behavioral Health Center; Michael Straker, MD, Obstetrics Gynecology, Clara Maass Medical Center; Nelson Aluya, MBBS, MD, Internal Medicine, Newark Beth Israel Medical Center, and Leah Dungee, RN, Director of Maternal Child Health Services at Jersey City Medical Center.

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a devastating effect on New Jersey, and in particular, on members of our Black and brown communities. According to state data, Black residents, although only representing 14 percent of the state’s population, accounted for nearly 26 percent of diagnosed COVID-19 cases and 22 percent of fatalities. Despite the current widespread availability of the COVID-19 vaccine and the disproportionate impact of the coronavirus, the state reports that only 6% of Black residents have been vaccinated compared to 56% of white residents.

“It is our hope that Black community members, mothers, expectant mothers and women in particular, will join this webinar to learn more about the safety of the COVID-19 vaccine,” said DeAnna Minus-Vincent, MPA, Senior Vice President, Chief Social Integration and Health Equity Strategist, RWJBarnabas Health.  “As we know, in order to achieve immunity and protect our family, neighbors and friends, it is critical that approximately 70% of the population get vaccinated to protect us all.”

The webinar is free and open to all. Those interested in attending can register at: The meeting number for the webinar is: 129 782 4126 and the password is: RWJBH. The join by phone, call 1-415-655-0001 and enter access code: 129 782 4126. The webinar will feature a 15-minute Q&A segment with the panelists. Attendees are invited to send in their questions ahead of time to [email protected].  


RWJBarnabas Health is the largest, most comprehensive academic health care system in New Jersey, with a service area covering nine counties with five million people. The system includes eleven acute care hospitals – Clara Maass Medical Center in Belleville, Community Medical Center in Toms River, Jersey City Medical Center in Jersey City, Monmouth Medical Center in Long Branch, Monmouth Medical Center Southern Campus in Lakewood, Newark Beth Israel Medical Center in Newark, Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital  in New Brunswick, Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital   Somerset in Somerville, Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital  at  Hamilton in Hamilton, Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital  Rahway in Rahway and Saint Barnabas Medical Center in Livingston, three acute care children’s hospitals and a leading pediatric rehabilitation hospital with a network of outpatient centers, a freestanding 100-bed behavioral health center, two trauma centers, a satellite emergency department, ambulatory care centers, geriatric centers, the state’s largest behavioral health network, comprehensive home care and hospice programs, fitness and wellness centers, retail pharmacy services, affiliated medical groups, multi-site imaging centers and an accountable care organization.

RWJBH is New Jersey’s largest private employer – with more than 35,000 employees, 9,000 physicians and 1,000 residents and interns – and routinely captures national awards for outstanding quality and safety. RWJBH and Rutgers University have partnered to create New Jersey’s largest academic health care system.   The collaboration aligns RWJBH with Rutgers’ education, research and clinical activities, including those at the Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey – the state’s only NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center – and Rutgers University Behavioral Health.