Concerns over fast-tracked COVID-19 vaccine has Americans unsure about vaccination

Candice JaimungalSocial Media Contributor
September 15, 2020, 11:56 AM UTC

Many Americans are unsure if they would get a COVID-19 vaccine.  

In the latest Economist/YouGov Poll, 32 percent of Americans say they would not get a coronavirus vaccine, if and when one becomes available. Another 32 percent of Americans haven’t made their decision, saying they are unsure if they would get vaccinated. In contrast, only two in five (36%) Americans say they would get a coronavirus vaccine.  

The Economist/YouGov data comes after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration stated they are prepared to fast track the coronavirus vaccine and after President Donald Trump criticized the FDA for moving too slowly.  

Despite efforts to fast-track a coronavirus vaccine -- Americans don’t seem to think it’s a good thing.   

In this week's poll, 62 percent of those who say they are concerned about the safety of a fast-tracked coronavirus vaccine, say they would not get vaccinated themselves. Of those who say they are very concerned, a quarter (26%) say they would get the vaccine, while two in five (42%) say they would not. One-third (33%) of Americans who are very concerned about the safety of a fast-tracked vaccine say they are still unsure if they would get vaccinated themselves.  

For additional data, YouGov asked our Chat users to go deeper on the issue and tell us why planned to get vaccinated, or not. You can share your views on whether you would get a coronavirus vaccine here

When we asked YouGov Chat users to tell us why they would not get a coronavirus vaccine, many cited concerns over the safety of the vaccine – and the speed of its development. “Vaccines typically take years not months to get research and get through the approval process. I would never take a vaccine that was not vetted,” reasoned one user. “I do not trust vaccines that are rushed through their trials. Once it had been proven and used without side effects for several years, I will rethink my answer.” wrote another.  

See the toplines and crosstabs from this week’s Economist/YouGov Poll  

Methodology: The Economist survey was conducted by YouGov using a nationally representative sample of 1,500 U.S. adult citizens interviewed online between September 6 - 8, 2020. This sample was weighted according to gender, age, race, and education based on the American Community Survey, conducted by the US Bureau of the Census, as well as 2016 Presidential vote, registration status, geographic region, and news interest. Respondents were selected from YouGov’s opt-in panel to be representative of all US citizens. The margin of error is approximately 3.4% for the overall sample.  

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Everyday, members of YouGov Chat are asked to share their opinion on a topic in the news. We allow anyone to take part in these chats, and do not display or weight results in real-time. Instead, to make the experience informative but still interactive, the Chat displays weighted data from YouGov Direct to show them how the rest of the country voted. This enables us to pose the question to all, while retaining data accuracy and validity when communicating results. 

YouGov Chat seeks to add to the ‘what?’ (the quantitative poll result) by finding the ‘why?” (qualitative open ends) in a member’s own words. Learn more about YouGov Chat here.   

Image: Getty