(NEXSTAR) – A new poll suggests the politicization of the timing of a new COVID-19 vaccine may be undermining public confidence in the first round of vaccinations.
The data from Axios/Ipsos suggests wide gaps in confidence about who can be trusted to tell the American public that an available vaccine is a safe preventative measure for the coronavirus.
According to a survey of over 1,000 adults taken last week, 60 percent of Americans aren’t likely to get the first-generation shot, an eight percent drop from a month ago. Ipsos has been running polling on the virus since March and indicates that patterns are emerging.
“Trust in the federal government to provide people with accurate information about COVID-19 is on a gradual, but consistent, decline,” Ipsos executives wrote in a summary of the findings.
The push for a vaccine has become intertwined with the presidential race as President Trump has repeatedly offered hope of vaccine approval this year, perhaps even before the November election. The director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Dr. Anthony Fauci, has said early 2021 is a more likely timeline for widespread vaccinations to begin.
The poll results show a wide credibility gap for Mr. Trump, specifically on vaccine safety.
“Just 19% say the president’s stamp of approval would make them likely to be inoculated from the virus, including fewer than half (40 percent) of Republicans,” wrote the Ipsos executives.
Fewer than half of respondents trust Joe Biden (47 percent), according to Axios, but that number has remained relatively stable.
Personal doctors are the most trusted source on vaccine safety at 62 percent, but even they would be unable to sway over a third of Americans. An endorsement from the Food and Drug Administration would make just over half of the individuals surveyed more likely to take the vaccine.
More than a million people worldwide have now died since the virus surfaced in late 2019.
Last week, Dr. Fauci warned Americans that a widely-available vaccine alone would not be enough to fully end the need for safety measures meant to protect people from contracting the virus.
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