One if five Americans hold anti-vaxxer beliefs and some may be hard to reach

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Sumary of One if five Americans hold anti-vaxxer beliefs and some may be hard to reach:

  • One in five Americans self-identify as anti-vaxxers, or people who disagree with the use of vaccines, a new study suggests..
  • Researchers from Texas A&M University found that eight percent of Americans actively socially identify as an anti-vaxxer, while 14 percent of Americans identify with the beliefs of anti-vaxxers..
  • The team fears that the large amount on anti-vaxxers in America makes public health messaging a challenge, and the fact that many even identify with the usually-stigmatized label is a worrying discovery..
  • The data reflects an issue American health officials are currently facing with the Covid-19 vaccine rollout, as vaccine hesitancy may prevent the country from ever reaching herd immunity..
  • They determined that those who more strongly identified with the ‘anti-vaxx’ label not only had stronger beliefs in the ideology, but also that they were less likely to be reached by health experts to change their minds..
  • Those who identified as an anti-vaxxer were most likely to be anti-expert, a Republican, a parent with a child at home or someone who considers themselves to be in good health..
  • Many who identify as anti-vaxxers see themselves as part of an in-group, and health officials and others who receive vaccines as part of an out-group..
  • Efforts to reach these people, and attempt to convince them to receive vaccines by health officials could even backfire, as they may become more resolved in their beliefs when facing the out-group….

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