USA: Full approval of the Biontech vaccine failed to convince vaccine skeptics

Many Americans who did not want to be vaccinated against Corona last summer often gave the reason for their reluctance that they did not trust the conditional approval of the vaccine by the FDA. This conditional approval expresses the fact that we do not know enough about the safety of the vaccines.

In August, however, the FDA gave the vaccine full approval – because at that time there was enough data on the safety of the vaccine after hundreds of millions of vaccinations administered. But that hasn’t changed the reluctance of many skeptics, as a new survey study in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine shows. By the beginning of 2022, 25 percent of Americans were only partially or not at all vaccinated.

Between the end of August and the beginning of September, i.e. in the two weeks after full approval, the researchers interviewed a representative sample of 535 previously unvaccinated adults from the USA. Of these, 3.6 percent stated that they had now received the first vaccination dose. Only another nine percent stated that they had been convinced of the vaccination through full approval and that they would be vaccinated in the near future.

47.3 percent, on the other hand, remained hesitant and stated that they were still not convinced of the safety of the vaccines. 43.5 percent, on the other hand, did not want to be vaccinated under any circumstances.

The results of the study indicate a similar situation as was recently found in Germany after the approval of the Novavax vaccine. Vaccination skeptics can only rarely be convinced by the solution of superficially stated concerns. Authorities should consider this fact when reacting to upcoming pandemics, the researchers advise.