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Survey: 19% Of Greater Cincinnati 'Definitely Not' Getting COVID-19 Vaccine

A web-based survey conducted by Interact for Health shows 19% of Greater Cincinnati will not get vaccinated for COVID-19, which could impact a regional vaccine goal.

The survey was conducted between July 7-16, 2021, to understand adults’ COVID-19 vaccination status, intentions to get vaccinated, and barriers and facilitators to vaccination. A random sample of 502 adults from Greater Cincinnati were as interviewed using an online survey platform.

Nearly 6 in 10 Greater Cincinnati adults reported they had been vaccinated and 7% reported they will get the vaccine. About 2 in 10 (18%) hadn’t decided whether they will get the vaccine, while 19% said they will not.

Research Associate Colleen Desmond is looking on the bright side. She says there's still a significant portion that wants to get vaccinated.

"There's a population we're probably not going to get to, but there is still that group that wants it and they just haven't gotten it yet," Desmond said.

Reasons given for not wanting the vaccine ranged from concerns with the vaccines' timeline of development, experiencing side effects, or general distrust of vaccines.

Institute For Policy Research Director Eric Rademacher says there's a group of unvaccinated people that could be persuaded, but worries how the media has cast the unvaccinated in a bad light.

"I've heard a lot of unvaccinated folks talk and they're not talking about what I would consider to be unrealistic things necessarily," Rademacher said. "They may be looking at it a little differently than I might … but trying to seek more information is something that we should value and not necessarily say, 'Well, if you haven't gotten vaccinated yet, then you must believe this, that or the other.'"

Rademacher says there are conversations that can be had to address misunderstandings with public health that have turned into staunch anti-vaccination stances.

"The 'don't get vaxxed' or 'not getting vaxxed' conversation is much more rounded than you might think if you just picked up a newspaper or you just looked on social media," Rademacher said.

At least 55% of the survey's respondents trust their physicians a great deal to provide reliable information about the COVID-19 vaccine, followed by pharmacists (42%) and local health departments (38%).

Effects to increase vaccine accessibility could be making an impact as well. A majority of survey respondents reported it is very easy to find a place to get a vaccine that is convenient for them (70%); at a place they trust (68%); or a place that is open at a time that fits their schedule (60%).

The region has been experiencing upticks in COVID-19 cases. According to the CDC's COVID Data Tracker, every county in Greater Cincinnati shows a high rate of community transmission. In fact, every county in Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana are seeing high spread.

At least 63% of the Greater Cincinnati region has received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

To see more statistics from Interact for Health's survey, click the photo above.

Cory Sharber attended Murray State University majoring in journalism and political science and comes to Cincinnati Public Radio from NPR Member station WKMS.