Younger adults in the US are more hesitant to take vaccines against the coronavirus disease than older adults, according to two new studies by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Factors like income and education may also affect vaccine hesitancy, the New York Times reported on Monday.
The first study looked at vaccination coverage among adults in the US between December 14, 2020 and May 22, 2021. The findings revealed that 57 per cent of adults had received at least one vaccine dose, by May 22. However, the rate varied considerably by age: only 38 per cent of those between 18 and 29 received one dose of vaccine, compared with 80 per cent of adults above 65.
The late approval of vaccines in young adults could be a reason. Yet, the uptake has also been slower among younger Americans, and a substantial proportion of them remain hesitant, the agency said.
If vaccine initiation rates remain stable, by late August, just 58 per cent of 18 to 29-year-olds will have been vaccinated, compared with 95 per cent of those 65 and up, the researchers found.
The study also revealed that the rate of inoculation was low among people living in rural counties with low income, uninsured or having lack of access to a computer or the internet.
The second study surveyed adults aged 18-39 years in the US between March and May 2021. The results showed that 24.9 per cent of the young adults said that they would probably or definitely not get vaccinated.
Those who were young, people of colour, low-income, lacked health insurance, lived outside of metropolitan areas or had lower levels of education were less likely to report being vaccinated or to say that they definitely planned to be vaccinated.
Only two weeks remain for US President Joe Biden’s self-imposed July 4 deadline for getting 70 per cent of adults at least partially vaccinated. In recent weeks, his administration has shifted its approach, moving away from mass vaccination sites and adopting more targeted strategies, including the creation of mobile or pop-up vaccination clinics and on-site vaccination events, the report said.