Apr 27, 2021 - News

Iowa has vaccine availability. The trouble is filling appointments

Illustration of 5 vaccine bottles, 4 are empty.

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

We've reached the point where most Iowans who want a vaccine can easily make an appointment.

  • But we're now at a cultural crosspoint: Trying to convince hesitant Iowans to get their shot.

Why it matters: More vaccinations = overall lower COVID-19 infection rates. We'll help protect those who can't get vaccinated and lower illnesses in those already immunized.

By the numbers:

  • 43% of Iowans have at least one dose.
  • But 20% of Iowa adults said they don't plan on getting vaccinated, while 15% are unsure, according to a survey by Morning Consult.

The majority of people who are declining vaccines are young adults 18-34, Republicans, and Black adults, according to Morning Consult.

  • Their main reasons? Hesitancy about potential side effects, sped-up approval processes, and general distrust in vaccines and manufacturers — even though the latter two have been debunked by medical experts.

Plus: More than 5 million people in the US missed their second Pfizer or Moderna shots, according to the New York Times. Some people said they skipped due to fears of side effects or feeling protected enough after the first shot.

The big picture: Public officials in Iowa and Polk County are spotting signs of a slowdown in vaccine demand. That's a problem for the state achieving herd immunity.


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