KFF COVID-19 Vaccine Monitor: October 2021

KFF COVID-19 Vaccine Monitor: October 2021

CATI Interviews Conducted by SSRS

The KFF COVID-19 Vaccine Monitor is an ongoing research project tracking the public’s attitudes and experiences with COVID-19 vaccinations. Using a combination of surveys and qualitative research, this project tracks the dynamic nature of public opinion as vaccine development and distribution unfold, including vaccine confidence and acceptance, information needs, trusted messengers and messages, as well as the public’s experiences with vaccination.

Key Findings

  • With the expected expansion of vaccine authorization to younger age groups in the coming weeks, the latest KFF COVID-19 Vaccine Monitor indicates that vaccine uptake has slowed among 12-17 year-olds, with half of parents saying their teen has gotten vaccinated or will do so right away. About three in ten parents of 5-11 year-olds (27%) are eager to get a vaccine for their younger child as soon as one is authorized, while a third say they will wait a while to see how the vaccine is working. Three in ten parents say they will definitely not get the vaccine for their 12-17 year-old (31%) or their 5-11 year-old (30%).
  • Parents’ main concerns when it comes to vaccinating their younger children ages 5-11 have to do with potential unknown long-term effects and serious side effects of the vaccine, including two-thirds who are concerned the vaccine may affect their child’s future fertility. With talk of possible school vaccine mandates, over half (53%) of parents are worried their child may be required to get vaccinated for COVID-19 even if they don’t want them to. Some parents also express concerns related to access or information-related barriers to vaccination, including larger shares of lower-income parents who are concerned about missing work to deal with children’s vaccinations (51%), having to pay out-of-pocket to get their child vaccinated (45%), not being able to get the vaccine from a trusted place (48%), or having difficulty traveling to a vaccination location (38%).
  • The pace of vaccine uptake also appears to be slowing among adults, with 72% saying they have gotten at least one dose, the same share who said so last month. Partisanship continues to be a sharp dividing line in vaccine attitudes, including among fully vaccinated adults, with nearly four in ten fully vaccinated Republicans saying they are unlikely to get a booster dose when it’s recommended for them.