A new study has found that more than 25% of U.S. Parents do not plan to get their kids COVID-19 vaccinations and many of them are also opposing school-required coronavirus shots.
The study found that moms were more opposed to this as compared to dads, especially white mothers who were Republicans.
The co-author of the study Jessica Calarco said, “Women tend to serve as family health managers within the family so they are generally more likely than men to follow expert medical recommendations for avoiding health risks.” Calarco is a professor of sociology at Indiana University Bloomington.
Calarco stated in a news release by the university, “However, with the onslaught of misinformation around the coronavirus, the pressure women face to control risks may be leading them to disproportionately oppose some new efforts to promote public health.”
This study looked at a survey consisting of almost 2,000 U.S. parents and interviews from the Pandemic Parenting Study conducted by Calarco. This study has 64 mothers who are diverse economically, politically, and with racial backgrounds.
The preliminary findings of this study were posted on SocArXiv which is a preprint server. It has not yet been peer-reviewed.
34% of the mothers stated that they do not wish or plan to get their kids vaccinated against COVID-19. This number was high for white mothers who identified themselves as Republicans.
The research showed that only 17% of fathers said that they do not want their kids to get the vaccine.
This survey also states that almost 33% of mothers are opposed to the school required coronavirus vaccinations. This includes 54% of mothers who are white and Republican. One in five dads also said the same thing.
Calarco said she was quite surprised with the gender disparity in the study because women often accept the advice of medical experts.
She said, “In the U.S., we expect people to take responsibility for their health by avoiding health risks. Mothers, in particular, face strong pressure to control risks to their families’ health. With rampant misinformation, many mothers perceive themselves as able to control the risks of COVID-19 (including through the use of masks) but not the risks of the vaccines. So, they are planning to limit their children’s exposure to the virus rather than depend on the vaccine.”
The researchers also stated that parents who do not have a college degree were more likely than others to oppose the school-required immunizations. The study said Black parents were more likely than white parents to oppose school mandated shots.
Also, the survey states that parents who have been infected with COVID-19 were more likely to oppose the school required shots and mask mandates as compared to others.
Calarco said, “One way we can help turn this around is by changing the current culture that pressures and blames mothers to a culture that includes community care. Treating children’s health and well-being as a collective responsibility — not an individual one — is what vaccines are all about.”