THURSDAY, July 22, 2021 (HealthDay News) — Twenty-four percent of young U.S. adults are hesitant to receive a COVID-19 vaccine, according to a study published online July 14 in the Journal of Adolescent Health.

Sally H. Adams, Ph.D., from the University of California in San Francisco, and colleagues queried 5,082 young adults (ages 18 to 25 years) on intention to receive a COVID-19 vaccine and related perspectives.

Overall, 17 percent of the respondents had been vaccinated and 83 percent had not. The researchers found that 76 percent of unvaccinated respondents indicated an intention to become vaccinated. Desire to wait and see if the vaccine is safe, concerns over side effects, and believing others are in greater need of the vaccine were the most frequently cited reasons for potentially rejecting vaccination (56, 53, and 44 percent, respectively).

“Public health initiatives need to adapt rapidly as vaccine intentions and availability change, and research needs to close the knowledge gap regarding young adult vaccination motivation, barriers to vaccine access, and factors that might mitigate hesitancy,” the authors write. “Continued monitoring of vaccine intention, motivations, and barriers to access, with updated surveys reflecting real-time changes, can contribute to improved messaging and targeted outreach to increase young adult COVID-19 vaccination.”

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