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Only 18 percent of parents of children under 5 say they plan to get their child vaccinated against COVID as soon as they can, while nearly 4 in 10 say they will "wait and see" before getting shots for their child, a new U.S. survey reveals.
Nearly 3 in 10 (27%) said they would "definitely not" get their child vaccinated and 11% said they would do so only if required, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation's Vaccine Monitor survey released Wednesday.
More than half of parents with children younger than 5 said they "don't have enough information about the safety and effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines for children in this age group," and about 13% of parents said the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's delay in authorizing a vaccine for this age group made them less confident about its safety, while 22% said it made them more confident.
COVID vaccines for these youngest Americans could come this summer: In April, Moderna asked the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to approve the emergency use of its vaccine in kids under 6. Pfizer continues to gather data on the power of a third shot for kids under 5, after a weak showing in the immune response triggered by two doses prompted the company to wait for results from three doses in this age group. Data on three doses is expected by June.
Responses from parents of older children were similar to those with young kids.
Among parents of children ages 5-11, 39% said their children were already vaccinated while 32% said their children would definitely not be vaccinated. Among parents of children ages 12-17, the rates were 56% and 31%, respectively.
Concerns about not having enough information about the safety and effectiveness of vaccines for their children were expressed by 34% of parents of children ages 5-11 and 25% of parents of children ages 12-17.
More than 80% of all parents in the survey said they felt their child was very or somewhat safe from COVID-19 while at school, but the rate was higher among white parents (52%) than among Black and Hispanic parents (one third), CNN reported.
When it came to school mask mandates, the percentage of parents who said that their child was required to wear a mask at school fell from 69% in September to 16% in April.
Still, "parents who are Black or Hispanic are more than twice as likely as White parents to say their child usually wears a mask [70% vs. 26%] and five times as likely to say that most other students at their child's school wear masks [9% vs. 47%]," according to the survey authors.
By Robert Preidt and Robin Foster HealthDay Reporters
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