CDC Fought To Convince Undecided Republicans To Get Vaccinated

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(CNN) – Public health experts at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) face challenges, and sometimes struggle, as they try to convince undecided Republicans that get vaccinated against COVID-19, federal officials familiar with the situation told CNN.

“It’s kind of a problem to find out with this particular audience what resonates with them, because they see that vaccines take away their freedom,” said one official. “It is a difficult escalation for everyone in terms of public health. It is moving a rock from a mountain.

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According to a Kaiser Family Foundation poll of more than 2,000 people in the United States in April, 42% of Republicans surveyed, and only 19% of Democrats interviewed, are less than enthusiastic about the COVID-19 vaccine. 19.

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These differences are clearly manifested in the vaccination rate from one state to another. According to CDC data, the 22 states with the highest percentage of vaccinated people voted for President Joe Biden in November. Among the 17 states with the lowest vaccination rates, all but one voted for former President Donald Trump.

In a statement, a CDC spokesperson acknowledged the obstacles to overcoming doubts about vaccines in the United States.

“This is a complex and unprecedented public health challenge,” wrote Jason McDonald, the agency’s spokesman. “CDC continues to balance the need to educate and inform people about safe behaviors once they are vaccinated, as well as to keep public health recommendations in place to prevent further spread of COVID-19 that could threaten our achievements.”

Federal officials expressed skepticism that simply explaining the science – that vaccines dramatically decrease the chance that you will contract the coronavirus and pass it on to others – would convince a large proportion of vaccine-doubtful conservatives to get them.

“It can feel selfish when someone says they don’t want to get vaccinated. It is almost as if they are telegraphing a message saying ‘I am invulnerable and I don’t care about you’. I don’t know how to reach people like that, ”said one of the officials.

Another official said the key is to listen.

“If we keep trying to saturate them with that covid is bad, that is not going to work. It’s going to be a challenge, but we have to keep trying to better understand how they feel and why they feel the way they do. ‘

Until then, the official said, “it will be very difficult to convince them to get vaccinated.”

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