NEW YORK — About 1 in 3 Americans say they definitely or probably won’t get the COVID-19 vaccine. That's according to a new poll that some experts say is discouraging news if the U.S. hopes to achieve herd immunity and vanquish the outbreak.
The poll from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research found that while 67% of Americans plan to get vaccinated or have already done so, 15% are certain they won’t and 17% say probably not.
Many expressed doubts about the vaccine’s safety and effectiveness, even though few if any serious side effects have turned up more than a month and a half into the vaccination drive.
The poll indicates that vaccine skepticism runs higher among younger people, people without college degrees, Black Americans and Republicans.
The poll of 1,055 adults, taken Jan. 28 through Feb. 1, provides insight into the skepticism.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Insititute for Allergies and Infectious Diseases, has said that the U.S. will likely need between 70% and 85% of all Americans to be inoculated against the virus in order to reach herd immunity.
Many health experts believe the U.S. will fall well short of that goal if just 67% of Americans get vaccinated.