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Poll: 46% of Tennessee parents say they have vaccinated their children against COVID-19

The latest analysis of a poll from Fall 2021 focused on the attitudes and behaviors of Tennessee parents regarding the COVID-19 vaccine and their children.
Vanderbilt University Medical Center analyzed results from a Fall 2021 poll this week.
Vanderbilt University Medical Center analyzed results from a Fall 2021 poll this week.(Vanderbilt University Medical Center)
Published: Feb. 23, 2022 at 4:07 PM EST
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - A recent poll from Vanderbilt University Medical Center showed that almost half of Tennessee parents had vaccinated their children against COVID-19.

A poll of roughly 1,000 Tennessee parents reported that 46% of parents with children aged 12 to 17 reported their child had been vaccinated for COVID-19, and another 14% said they “were likely to get their child vaccinated in the next few months.”

The latest analysis of a poll from Fall 2021 focused on the attitudes and behaviors of Tennessee parents regarding the COVID-19 vaccine and their children, according to a news release.

Experts noted that the poll was conducted before vaccines were made widely available for children aged 5 to 12 and before the arrival of the Omicron variant.

“In the months since the poll and with omicron tearing through the state, we’ve seen an anecdotal uptick in interest from parents for COVID-19 vaccine for their children,” said Joe Zickafoose, MD, MS, assistant professor of Clinical Pediatrics at the Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt and member in the Center. “It remains to be seen whether that translates into a meaningful increase in vaccinated children in Tennessee.”

In East Tennessee, just 34% of parents said their child had been vaccinated, which showed a large discrepancy between West Tennessee’s 60% and Middle Tennessee’s 51%.

According to experts who released the results, “most” parents who decided not to get vaccinated cited either trust in the vaccine, concerns about the safety of the vaccine or already having COVID-19.

“These results reflect the glass half-full/glass half-empty experience we’ve had in the office. Many parents are interested, but many are hesitant,” Zickafoose said. “I encourage parents to speak with their child’s primary care provider about their concerns so they can have the best possible information to make their decision.”

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