Nearly one in four people in New York says they probably won’t take COVID-19 – which could be bad news in the midst of a pandemic to achieve crucial immunity for the herd.
More than 800 voters were interviewed last week, according to the Siena College Research Institute and the Wall Street Journal on Tuesday – as several pharmaceutical companies announced they had developed vaccines with an astonishing 90 percent effectiveness.
Twenty-four percent of those surveyed said they would either definitely not take it or probably wouldn’t take a vaccine if it was available, the research showed.
A further 35 per cent of public residents surveyed said they would definitely be immunized, while 34 per cent said they were likely to take the vaccine, the poll said.
Those who are likely to be vaccinated belonged to all sorts of groups, “from a party, region, race, age, religion, gender, or even whoever supported them in the presidential election,” Siena spokesman Steven Greenberg told the WSJ.
The country’s leading infectious disease expert, Dr Anthony Fauci, said on Sunday that the United States could achieve herd immunity – meaning so many people would be immunized against the disease that the likelihood of it spreading drastically decreases – “fairly quickly” if enough population vaccinated.
“What we need is we need to vaccinate as many people as possible,” Fauci said on CBS TV’s “Face the Nation”.
“If you get the vast majority of people vaccinated with a highly effective vaccine, we can reasonably quickly achieve the immunity of the herd, which would be a cover for the country’s defense.”
Fauci said people need to be reassured that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, which provides emergency approval to deliver promising vaccines that have successfully passed late-stage experiments, will not approve anything that is unsafe.
The FDA-approved vaccine could be released as early as mid-December, Fauci and other government officials said, although it will probably only be given to healthcare workers and vulnerable populations for the first time.
According to officials, the vaccine is likely to be available to the public only in the spring.