Vaccinated older adults far more worried about COVID-19 than unvaccinated: poll

Vaccinated older adults far more worried about COVID-19 than unvaccinated: poll
© Getty Images

American adults aged 50 and older who are vaccinated against COVID-19 are more likely to be worried about the virus than those who have not gotten the shot, according to a new poll released Wednesday from The Associated Press and the NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. 

The poll, conducted from Aug. 20-23, found that just 25 percent of older Americans who are vaccinated said they were not worried about them or a family member getting infected with COVID-19, compared to 61 percent of unvaccinated Americans who said the same. 

Additionally, those who expressed more concern about themselves or a loved one getting infected were more likely to practice social distancing, wear masks and avoid going near large groups of people. 

ADVERTISEMENT

Overall, 36 percent of people aged 50 and older said they were either very or extremely worried about COVID-19 infections amid a surge in new cases fueled by the highly contagious delta variant, approximately double the percentage of older U.S. adults who said the same in June. 

The lower level of concern about COVID-19 infections among those who are still unvaccinated comes amid concerns that vaccine hesitancy remains relatively high in the country and as daily new cases continue to reach over 100,000. 

The Wednesday poll also revealed that older U.S. adults who are concerned about COVID-19 were less likely to report a positive quality of life or high levels of mental and emotional wellbeing. 

Overall, 1 in 3 U.S. adults aged 50 and older say they feel socially isolated at least sometimes, with 1 in 4 saying their social lives and relationships have worsened over the past year. 

However, majorities of adults aged 50 and older overall still positively rate their quality of life, mental health and satisfaction with relationships as well as their social lives. 

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), roughly 64 percent of the total U.S. population has received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine thus far, with about 56 percent fully vaccinated as of Tuesday. 

ADVERTISEMENT

A Wednesday Gallup poll revealed that a recent increase in the number of Americans who say they are vaccinated includes the largest Republican surge in vaccinations since April. 

The surge in vaccinations follows the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) full approval of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.

President BidenJoe BidenManchin to vote to nix Biden's vaccine mandate for larger businesses Congress averts shutdown after vaccine mandate fight Senate cuts deal to clear government funding bill MORE also announced that all federal workers must be vaccinated, and all employers with at least 100 workers must require shots or weekly COVID-19 testing. 

The Wednesday AP-NORC poll, which included more than 1,000 people ages 50 or older, reported a margin of error of roughly 4 percentage points.