This article was originally published here
PLoS One. 2021 Aug 24;16(8):e0256122. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0256122. eCollection 2021.
The introduction of COVID-19 vaccines is a major public health breakthrough. However, members of US Black and Hispanic communities, already disproportionately affected by the COVID-19 virus, may be less willing to receive the vaccine. We conducted a broad, representative survey of US adults (N = 1,950) in order to better understand vaccine beliefs and explore opportunities to increase vaccine acceptance among these groups. The survey results suggested that Black and Hispanic individuals were less willing than Whites to receive the vaccine. US Blacks and Hispanics also planned to delay receiving the COVID-19 vaccine for a longer time period than Whites, potentially further increasing the risk of contracting COVID-19 within populations that are already experiencing high disease prevalence. Black respondents were less likely to want the COVID-19 vaccine at all compared with Whites and Hispanics, and mistrust of the vaccine among Black respondents was significantly higher than other racial/ethnic groups. Encouragingly, many Black and Hispanic respondents reported that COVID-19 vaccine endorsements from same-race medical professionals would increase their willingness to receive it. These respondents said they would also be motivated by receiving more information on the experiences of vaccine study participants who are of their own race and ethnicity. The results have implications for improved messaging of culturally-tailored communications to help reduce COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy among communities disproportionately impacted by the pandemic.