Convincing Americans to get a Covid-19 Vaccine Will be a Hard Task

Despite high levels of concern about the virus, AND the fact that more than half are worried about their physical health and their child’s or children’s physical health, few Americans will be running to the clinic for a Covid-19 vaccine once it is available.

In our most recent study of 2,000 Americans, only 31% of white and 23% of Black Americans say they trust that when a vaccine is found, it will be safe. Slightly more white Americans (34%) and slightly fewer Blacks (19%) say they plan on getting the vaccine once it is approved.

Many believe the vaccine may actually be unsafe. Forty-five percent of Black and 33% of white Americans say they are worried that an upcoming COVID-19 vaccine will not be safe. This supports other research we’ve seen: according to a recent KFF poll, “62% of Americans worry that the political pressure from the Trump administration will lead the FDA to rush to approve a coronavirus vaccine without making sure that it is safe and effective.”

The concern is so high that even getting paid $100 to get the vaccine wouldn’t be enough – and that is saying something, considering the economic dumpster fire that is 2020. An Axios/Ipsos poll found that fewer than half of Americans (44%) would be likely to get a vaccine if they were paid $100 to do so.

What would convince people to get a vaccine? Doctor’s orders. In the same Axios study, 62% of Americans say they would be somewhat or very likely to get a Covid-19 vaccine if their doctor said it was safe. And if Trump says a vaccine is safe? Only 19% say that would make them somewhat or very likely to get it — and it’s probably safe to say that Kamala Harris won’t be among them!

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