Brief COVID-19 Vaccine Attitudes among Nonelderly Adults Who Reported Being Unlikely to Get Vaccinated
A Qualitative Snapshot from the Early Vaccine Rollout
Dulce Gonzalez, Haley Samuel-Jakubos, Brigette Courtot, Clara Alvarez Caraveo, Joshua Aarons
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Adults’ decisionmaking about getting the COVID-19 vaccines is complex. This brief provides qualitative insights from interviews conducted in February 2021 with 40 nonelderly adults who reported in the Urban Institute’s December 2020 Well-Being and Basic Needs Survey (WBNS) that they would probably or definitely not get a COVID-19 vaccine. Our key findings are as follows:

  • As of February 2021, most interviewees who indicated in the WBNS that they were not interested in being vaccinated maintained they were still unlikely to get a COVID-19 vaccine if it were available to them.
  • Interviewees were primarily concerned about the short- and long-term side effects of the COVID-19 vaccines and their accelerated development.
  • Many interviewees said more information and more time to see how the vaccines work on others could help them change their minds.
  • Interviewees mainly relied on television news programs and online news media for information about the vaccines. Many were having difficulty trusting that the COVID-19 vaccines are safe, given the political baggage, misinformation, and seemingly contradictory information surrounding them.
  • Friends and family, particularly through social media, were another key source of information about the COVID-19 vaccines. Despite not wanting a vaccine, some interviewees wanted their high-risk loved ones to get vaccinated.
  • Health care providers emerged as a trusted source of information about the vaccines. Trust in public health experts was mixed.
Research Areas Health and health care
Tags Health equity Public health From Safety Net to Solid Ground
Policy Centers Health Policy Center