Household, education levels, insurance factor in the vaccination rate, according to a study

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Across the country, people of color are contracting and dying from COVID-19 in higher rates than whites throughout the pandemic. As the country enters its fifth month of vaccine deployment, data shows racial disparities in vaccinations are a problem.

New research from GoodRX suggests other models of iniquity: among single-parent households, education levels, insurance status and households without Internet access.

Low income communities delay in vaccination, according to federal data from the Census Bureau’s Household Pulse Survey.

Adults with household income below $ 50,000 continued to have immunization rates below the national average, while adults with household income above $ 50,000 have immunization rates above the national average. national average.

Households with incomes of $ 100,000 or more had vaccination rates nearly double those of adults with incomes below $ 25,000 in the first half of March.

States with higher median household income tended to have higher vaccination rates overall, according to GoodRX analysis.

For example, in Nevada, where the median household income hovers around $ 60,365, only about 43% of the total population has been fully immunized. In contrast, the median household income in Maryland, Connecticut, and New Jersey is over $ 70,000 and vaccination rates are high.

GoodRX research indicated other disparities for people without access to a reliable Internet, the support of a partner or the privilege of having access to higher education.

“Many focus on the vaccine reluctance and the political factors behind the reluctance, but we also need to pay attention to the privilege of accessing a vaccine,” writes Tori Marsh, GoodRX drug pricing researcher.

States with a higher proportion of single-parent households have lower immunization rates, including Nevada, according to GoodRX.

“Whether it’s having someone to help with child care, the complexities of balancing a family and a job plus other challenges in life, raising a child as a single parent. can make life more difficult. And these challenges can extend to finding time to enroll in a vaccine niche or queue at a mass vaccination site, ”Marsh writes.

States have relied on Internet access to schedule appointments and refer patients to vaccination centers. GoodRX found that states with a higher proportion of households without Internet access have lower immunization rates. In Nevada, about 16% of the population does not have access to a reliable Internet.

There are also disparities according to the level of education. Adults with a bachelor’s degree or above have the highest vaccination rate – 45% nationally. Adults without a high school diploma have the lowest vaccination rates at nearly 19%, according to census data.

States with a higher proportion of residents with a bachelor’s degree generally have higher vaccination rates, according to research from GoodRX. Vaccination rates in Massachusetts are one of the highest in the country at 57 percent and about 24 percent of residents have a bachelor’s degree. Nevada, on the other hand, has an overall vaccination rate of 43% and about 16% of residents have a bachelor’s degree.

Nevada has one of the highest uninsured rates in the country: 11% of residents are uninsured. Having medical insurance is a big factor in the state’s lower immunization rates, according to GoodRX. Conversely, in Massachusetts, about 3% of households are uninsured. lowest in the country while vaccination rates remain high at 57 percent.

“While residents without insurance have access to the COVID-19 vaccine, the lack of insurance status is a barrier that is bound to reducing preventive care in general, ”writes Marsh.

Vaccination rate data for the study used the CDC’s COVID Data Tracker. State-level percentages for single-family households, people with a bachelor’s degree, households without Internet, and uninsured rates used by the study were collected from the 2019 American Community Survey five-year estimates. .

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