When COVID vaccinations began, younger adults got relegated to the end of the line. On April 19, everyone 16 and older became eligible for vaccinations, but more than two months later, there are still young people who haven't gotten the shot. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has been researching Americans who haven't been vaccinated, and recently found a similarity that 1 in 4 unvaccinated younger adults share.
The CDC released a new report on June 21 that analyzed COVID vaccination coverage and intent among more than 2,700 adults ages 18 to 39. Vaccination coverage in the U.S. is lowest among adults in this age group, with 34 percent reporting having received a shot, per the CDC.
Intent to get vaccinated is also low. According to the CDC, nearly 25 percent of unvaccinated adults ages 18 to 39 say they "probably or definitely would not get vaccinated." On the other hand, only 17.8 percent said they were definitely planning to get vaccinated.
Breaking it down further, the CDC says that adults ages 18 to 24 years have the lowest intent to get vaccinated. Younger adults with less education, no insurance, and lower household incomes were also the least likely to be vaccinated or have plans to get vaccinated.
"Concerns about vaccine safety and effectiveness were the primary reported reasons for not getting vaccinated," the CDC noted. Of those not planning to get vaccinated, 56.3 percent have concerns about experiencing vaccine side effects, 56.5 lack trust in COVID vaccines, and 36.4 percent do not believe that a vaccine is necessary.
The CDC did find that 23.2 percent of adults ages 18 to 39 said they probably were going to get vaccinated or were unsure but not totally against the idea. According to the agency, vaccine acceptance among this age group "might be increased by improving confidence in vaccine safety and efficacy while emphasizing that vaccines are critical to prevent the spread of COVID-19 to friends and family and for resuming social activities."
Out of those probably getting vaccinated or unsure, 39 percent said they would be motivated to do so if they had more information indicating vaccines were safe, and 28.8 said they would do so given more information indicating that vaccines were effective.