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Infographic – More US Support for Childhood Vaccines Than Covid-19

Bar charts: U.S. opinion on MMR and Covid-19 vaccines

Click on image for full-size view (Pew Research Center)

27 May 2023. A recent poll shows U.S. adults continue to favor vaccinations against the childhood diseases mumps, measles, and rubella, but show less support for Covid-19 vaccines. The Pew Research Center reported the findings last week from a survey conducted in March 2023.

In three surveys since June 2016, Pew researchers find some nine in 10 Americans, 88 percent each time, say health benefits of the mumps, measles, and rubella or MMR vaccine outweigh the risks. In those same polls, between seven and eight in 10 Americans rate the MMR vaccine’s health benefits as high, while roughly two-thirds, between 64 and 69 percent, say the risks of that vaccine are low.

But for the Covid-19 vaccine, opinion in the U.S. is more divided. Roughly six in 10 Americans (62%) say benefits of the Covid-19 vaccines outweigh the risks, while more than one-third (36%) believe risks of that vaccine outweigh the benefits. Likewise less than half of American adults (45%) say preventive health benefits of the Covid-19 vaccine are high, and nearly as many, 41 percent, say risks of side effects are low.

While the American public is largely in favor of MMR vaccines for children, those not vaccinated against Covid-19 show less support. About three-quarters (74%) of respondents without a Covid-19 vaccine say MMR vaccine benefits outweigh the risks, compared to more than nine in 10 — 94 to 95 percent — of those with Covid-19 prime or booster shots. In addition, only about half of Americans without Covid-19 vaccines say MMR vaccines provide high health benefits, compared to roughly eight in 10 — 79 to 83 percent — of those with Covid-19 prime or booster vaccines.

Pew Research Center conducted the survey online with 10,701 U.S. adults taking part in the Center’s American Trends Panel from 13 to 19 Mar. 2023. Participants are recruited through national random sampling of U.S. households, with results weighted to be representative of the U.S. adult population.

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