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Most Parents Planning to Vaccinate Children Against COVID-19

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Released today, a new survey 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% will not vaccinate any of their children and 12% remain mixed or undecided. Vaccination intent in parents varies across racial and ethnic groups, with Asian American and Pacific Islander parents being the most likely to vaccinate their children (77%) and Black parents being the least likely (55%). And while at least 65% of parents of children ages six and 17 plan to vaccinate their children, only 56% of parents of children under the age of six will vaccinate their children.

Vaccination intent is especially prevalent in conversations about children returning to school. There is widespread support for making vaccines and information about them available at public schools (80%), and 59% of parents with children in school support requiring students to get vaccinated to attend school in person. Seventy-three percent of parents with children in school would be more likely to vaccinate their own children if such a requirement were in place.

Parents least likely to say they will get their children vaccinated include those who live in small towns and rural areas (42% will get all children vaccinated), those age 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.”

The research was conducted by Hart Research for the COVID 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 Collaborative has partnered with the Ad Council to address vaccine hesitancy with a COVID-19 Vaccine Education Initiative and the “It’s Up To You” campaign to ensure the American public has the latest and most accurate information about the COVID-19 vaccines. The Collaborative also has partnered with the Council of the Great City Schools on a range of education initiatives, including utilizing schools as vaccination sites.

“With COVID-19 vaccines now approved for children ages 12 and up, our vaccination education campaign with the COVID Collaborative will focus its efforts on getting good information to parents and their pediatricians,” said Lisa Sherman, CEO of the Ad Council.

The survey shows that parents trust doctors and experts the most when it comes to recommendations about vaccinating their children. A recommendation from their child’s pediatricians would earn trust from 83% of parents, and 76% say they are more likely to vaccinate their children upon hearing from top scientists and physicians that the vaccine is safe and 100% effective in children.

Parents also fear the risk of the virus to their children. Seventy percent of parents are worried that their children could get COVID-19 and view protecting their children as an important reason to vaccinate their children (83%) and themselves (77%). Eighteen percent of parents have a child who is at high risk.

“Parents trust their pediatricians when it comes to their child’s health, and that includes important questions they have about immunizations. I encourage all parents to talk with their pediatrician about the COVID-19 vaccine so they can get the information they need to make this decision,” said Lee Savio Beers, MD, FAAP, president of the American Academy of Pediatrics, a member of the COVID Collaborative. “Vaccinating children and teens will protect them and allow them to fully engage in the world again. That’s why we are thrilled to partner with the Ad Council and the COVID Collaborative on the vaccine education campaign.”

The Council of the Great City Schools has demonstrated the vital role that school districts can play in COVID-19 response, including as vaccination sites for parents, children, and others in the community. “There are numerous examples across the country of school districts stepping up as vaccination sites,” said Michael Casserly, Executive Director of the Council of the Great City Schools. “As the country works to vaccinate children and youth, we need to utilize more schools to help keep students and others in the community safe.”

Edited by Maryssa Gordon, Senior Editor, Price of Business Digital Network

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