(NEW YORK) — Fewer than half of Americans see the Johnson & Johnson coronavirus vaccine as safe and barely more than a fifth of those not yet vaccinated would be willing to take it — yet overall intentions to get vaccinated have risen since January in the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll.
Results on the J&J vaccine, in interviews before it was returned to use this weekend, suggest challenges in gaining acceptance: Just 46% think it’s very or somewhat safe, compared with more than 7 in 10 for the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. And 73% of those not yet vaccinated said they were unwilling to accept a J&J shot.
General reluctance remains substantial. Unpersuaded by more than 570,000 pandemic deaths in the United States, nearly 1 in 4 Americans, 24%, are disinclined to get any of the coronavirus vaccines, down from 32% three months ago. Sixteen percent rule it out entirely.
Seventy-four percent have received at least one dose (56%) or say they definitely or probably will get vaccinated (18%), up 9 percentage points from mid-January. While higher, that’s barely at the low end of estimates of what’s thought to be needed to achieve herd immunity. Hesitancy is highest among rural residents, Republicans, conservatives (especially strong conservatives) and those with no more than a high school diploma.
The J&J vaccine situation did not help: A quarter of unvaccinated adults say the halt in its distribution made them less inclined to get vaccinated, including similar shares of those likely and unlikely to get a shot. It’s possible, though not provable, that hesitancy may have eased further had that problem not arisen.
Among other results in the national survey, produced for ABC News by Langer Research Associates:
- There’s been a steep drop in the share of Americans who say the pandemic is not at all under control, from 52% in January to 15% now. Those who see it as completely or mostly under control is up 17 points, albeit just to 28%. The rest, 55%, see it as “somewhat” controlled.
- The public tilts against the idea of businesses requiring employees to be vaccinated before they come in to work, 45%-51%, support-oppose, and divides on colleges requiring students to get vaccinated before being allowed on campus, 50%-47%.
- At the same time, 55% support their state issuing printed or digital certificates that people can use to show businesses, employers and schools that they have been vaccinated. Forty-two percent are opposed.
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