The Best Evidence for How to Overcome COVID Vaccine Fears

Now that the COVID-19 vaccine is becoming available, somewhere between 60 and 90 percent of adults and children must be vaccinated or have antibodies resulting from infection in order to arrive at the safe harbor known as herd immunity, where the whole community is protected.

However, among the US population, there are large segments that remain reluctant or opposed to receiving the vaccines. In the Kaiser Family Foundation poll, 42 percent of Republicans said they definitely or probably would not. The same was true for 35 percent of Black adults, who, as a group, have borne a disproportionate share of sickness and death from COVID-19. Also deeply hesitant were 35 percent of rural residents, 36 percent of adults ages 30 to 49, and—especially worrisome given their public-facing roles—33 percent of essential workers and 29 percent of those who work in a health care delivery setting.

For the reluctant and distrustful, it will take targeted actions and communication strategies that speak to the specific concerns of each group to move them toward accepting the new vaccines. This article describes several approaches to reach those audiences.

Source: The Best Evidence for How to Overcome COVID Vaccine Fears

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    How Behavioral Science Can Help Contain the Coronavirus

    Very little is known about how factors like fear, misinformation, stress, and social norms are shaping behaviors that affect transmission of COVID-19. Even less is understood about what might lead people to ignore government recommendations altogether.

    To fill in these gaps, a consortium of more than 100 behavioral researchers on five continents is currently working around the clock to measure the full social and material consequences of this pandemic. Our goal is simple: to demonstrate in real time what is working—and what isn’t.

    The study is designed in three phases. The first consists of a 20-minute-long survey taken weekly that gauges how human beings are coping during this unprecedented crisis. Questions focus on individual thoughts, feelings, concerns and motivations, and how COVID-19 affects everything from faith in leaders to attitudes toward migrants. More than 45,000 people in 100 countries have taken the survey in 22 languages, and the study leaders are registering additional respondents every day.

    Source: How Behavioral Science Can Help Contain the Coronavirus

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