Nearly one-quarter of white evangelicals refuse COVID-19 vaccine: study

Nearly one-quarter of white evangelicals refuse COVID-19 vaccine: study
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Almost one-quarter of white evangelicals were refusing to take the coronavirus vaccine as of June, according to data released this week by the Public Religion Research Institute and Interfaith Youth Core.

The two organizations have tracked vaccine hesitancy in different religious groups since March and saw double-digit increases among all faith groups from March to June.

White evangelical Protestants remain the most likely to refuse to get the vaccine at 24 percent. White evangelical Protestants and Hispanic Protestants hit the bottom of the pack for agreeing to get vaccinated with both at 56 percent, a more than 10 point increase for both groups since March.

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The rate of vaccination has slowed in the U.S. as health officials struggle to overcome vaccine hesitancy.

The U.S. has 49 percent of its population fully vaccinated, according to data from Johns Hopkins.

Hispanic Catholics had the biggest jump in vaccine acceptance and led the pack, with 80 percent trusting the vaccines in June. White Catholics followed at 79 percent acceptance.

Black Protestants and Latter-Day Saints had an acceptance rate of 66 percent and 65 percent, respectively.

Religiously unaffiliated individuals were in the middle, at 75 percent.

The survey was conducted June 7-23 among 5,123 individuals. The margin of error is 1.65 percentage points.

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As the delta variant continues to spread across the U.S., most of the hospitalizations and the overwhelming number of COVID-19 deaths come from unvaccinated individuals.

The increase in cases has prompted the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to recommend vaccinated individuals wear masks in areas where there is high transmission of the virus.

Updated at 4:23 p.m.