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Vaccines, Vol. 10, Pages 31: COVID-19 Pediatric Vaccine Hesitancy among Racially Diverse Parents in the United States

Vaccines doi: 10.3390/vaccines10010031

Authors:
Celia B. Fisher
Aaliyah Gray
Isabelle Sheck

On 29 October 2021, the U.S. FDA authorized the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2) vaccine for emergency use in children ages 5–11 years. Racial/ethnic minorities have born the greatest burden of pediatric COVID-19 infection and hospitalization. Research indicates high prevalence of parental vaccine hesitancy among the general population, underscoring the urgency of understanding how race/ethnicity may influence parents’ decision to vaccinate their children. Two weeks prior to FDA approval, 400 Hispanic and non-Hispanic Asian, Black, and White parents of children 5–10 years participated in an online survey assessing determinants of COVID-19 pediatric vaccine hesitancy. Compared to 31% Black, 45% Hispanic, and 25% White parents, 62% of Asian parents planned to vaccinate their child. Bivariate and multivariate ordinal logistic regression demonstrated race/ethnicity, parental vaccine status, education, financial security, perceived childhood COVID-19 susceptibility and severity, vaccine safety and efficacy concerns, community support, and FDA and physician recommendations accounted for 70.3% of variance for vaccine hesitancy. Findings underscore the importance of multipronged population targeted approaches to increase pediatric COVID-19 vaccine uptake including integrating health science literacy with safety and efficacy messaging, communication efforts tailored to parents who express unwillingness to vaccinate, and interventions developed in partnership with and delivered through existing trusted community coalitions.

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MDPI Publishing