With covid vaccine hesitancy still an issue among Americans, currently, only around 50% of the population have received a vaccination. Experts are concerned that this may not be enough to provide us with the magical herd immunity levels we hear so much about. The answer may well lie with our children.
With only a few children having received their covid vaccines, there are enough numbers among the under 16’s to push us over the finish line, so to speak. The obvious question now is how do parents feel about the Covid vaccine and their children? Will they encourage them to be vaccinated?
A new nationwide survey released today from the COVID Collaborative, Ad Council, and the Council of the Great City Schools shows that 61% of parents plan to vaccinate all of their children, but 27% are against vaccination and 12% remain mixed or undecided.
How is this view affected by racial and ethnic groups across the country? Asian American and Pacific Islander parents are the most likely to vaccinate their children (77%) and Black parents are the least likely (55%). The age of the children also impacts vaccination adoption. While at least 65% of parents of children ages six to 17 plan to vaccinate their children, only 56% of parents of children under the age of six will vaccinate their children.
The study was commissioned by COVID Collaborative, a project of UNITE, a national assembly of experts, leaders, and institutions in health, education, and the economy and associations representing the diversity of the country to turn the tide on the pandemic by supporting federal, state and local COVID-19 response efforts.
Other key takeaways from the new study revealed the following attitudes among US parents towards child vaccinations.
- Most parents have heard something about new variants and severe illness from COVID-19 in children, but there is room to increase understanding.
- Vaccines will play an important role in making parents feel safer sending their children to school. More than seven in 10 parents with children in school would feel safer sending their children to school if their children were vaccinated or if they knew that most other students were vaccinated.
- There is widespread support for making vaccines and information about them available at public schools, and nearly three in five parents of children in school support requiring students to get vaccinated to attend school in person.
The survey also revealed very interesting data on who parents trust to inform them about vaccines and vaccine safety.
Parents least likely to say they will get their children vaccinated against COVID-19 include those who live in small towns and rural areas (42% will get all children vaccinated), those aged 18 to 29 (46%), women 18 to 39 (51%), White mothers (51%), Black mothers (45%), women without a college education (47%), Independents (48%), and Republicans (53%); and most of these groups are among those least likely to say they have been or will get vaccinated themselves.
“Parents want to keep their children safe and in school,” said John Bridgeland, CEO of COVID Collaborative. “This survey provides important insights to increase parent confidence in vaccination, which will enable children to be safe for in-person learning, on playgrounds, and for other activities that help them grow and thrive.”
Just exactly who was polled in the survey? COVID Collaborative also provides a detailed breadown.
The research for this study was conducted by Hart Research for theCOVID Collaborative, a national assembly of experts across health, education, and the economy working to support local, state, tribal, and federal leaders in turning the tide against the pandemic. The study contains many more fascinating facts and figures and you can access the whole report here.