18 Dec Penn Study Finds Low Acceptability Among Americans for COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate
MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Emily Largent, PhD, JD, RN
Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics
Assistant Professor, Medical Ethics and Health Policy
Perelman School of Medicine
MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?
Response: Ending the COVID-19 pandemic through vaccination will require sufficient vaccine uptake. Various means are being considered to promote uptake, including mandatory vaccination. For instance, COVID-19 vaccination might be mandated by states (e.g., as a condition for children to attend public school) or by employers. Given the opposition we’ve seen to masks, to choose just one example, our team wanted to gauge the acceptability of COVID-19 vaccine mandates.
MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings?
Response: Consistent with prior research, we found that demographic characteristics and partisanship were associated with self-reported likelihood of COVID-19 vaccination. Less than half of the survey respondents overall found mandates of any kind acceptable. Demographic characteristics and partisanship were associated with acceptance of COVID-19 vaccine mandates.
MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?
Response: The low acceptability of COVID-19 mandates suggests they should be a last resort – used only if the pandemic continues to rage and if efforts to increase vaccine access and to engage in public health messaging prove unsuccessful in achieving the level of vaccine uptake necessary for community immunity.
MedicalResearch.com: Is there anything else you would like to add?
Response: That said, mandates may still be appropriate and necessary for select groups – like workers in long-term care facilities, where we have seen tremendous loss and hardship for older adults and people with disabilities.
Largent EA, Persad G, Sangenito S, Glickman A, Boyle C, Emanuel EJ. US Public Attitudes Toward COVID-19 Vaccine Mandates. JAMA Netw Open. 2020;3(12):e2033324. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2020.33324
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