older women avoiding COVID vaccinations
(zEdward_Indy/Shutterstock)

Older Women Much Less Likely to Have Received COVID-19 Vaccine Than Older Men, New Study Shows

Although the White House has announced that nearly 90% of U.S. adults would be eligible for COVID-19 vaccinations in the coming weeks and despite a record-setting Saturday (April 3) when more than 4 million Americans received a vaccination shot, there are still disparities between groups receiving the life-saving vaccines — this time, it’s among older women.

According to new data from the Kaiser Family Foundation, men over the age of 65 are significantly more likely to have received at least one dose of the approved COVID-19 vaccines than women in the same age bracket.

Shefali Luthra of nonprofit newsroom The 19th has reported that, based on the Kaiser report, “only 59% of older women reported getting at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.” In contrast, she reported that “70% of older men said they had gotten at least one immunization.”

The gap between sexes shows just how difficult the vaccination campaign remains in America among certain groups. “The Kaiser Family Foundation poll suggests the gender gap stems almost entirely from differences in who has tried to sign up for a shot,” Luthra reported. “More than a quarter of senior women — about 26% — said they had not tried to book a vaccine appointment, compared with only 17% of senior men who said the same.”

Ashley Kirzinger, a pollster at the Kaiser Family Foundation who worked on the study, told Luthra that older women aren’t just resisting putting in the time and energy often needed to secure a vaccination slot, they also appear to have more serious concerns about the various vaccines’ safety and effectiveness.

“About 11% of older women say they will definitely not get a coronavirus vaccine, compared with only 4% of older men,” Kirzinger told Luthra.

Experts at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other public health services warn that this increased hesitancy to take the vaccine among certain groups may drastically undercut medical efforts to slow the spread of the disease and could make it more difficult for us to reach a “herd immunity,” where transmission of the virus slows significantly. They also caution that it may take specialized public health campaigns and increased government efforts to encourage those with doubts to go through with the vaccination process.

Currently, the CDC estimates that about 73% of adults 65 and older have gotten at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine. According to CDC data, roughly 146 million vaccines have been administered in the U.S. and about 15.8% of Americans are fully vaccinated.

 

Related: For more recent diversity and inclusion news, click here.

 

Latest News

5 Biggest News Stories of the Week: October 6

As the saying goes, the news never stops — but there’s a lot of it out there, and all of it doesn’t always pertain to our readers. In this weekly news roundup, we’ll cover the top news stories that matter most to our diversity focused audience. 1. The Dollar Divide…

WOCA 2022 Research: How to Improve Representation of Women of Color in the Workplace 

Capital One and DiversityInc shared the results of their collaborative research report on women of color in the workplace at the 2022 annual Women of Color and Their Allies event held in Louisville on Sept. 21 in conjunction with Humana. Dr. Chris Parker, Head of Research & Data, DiversityInc, confirmed…

WOCA 2022: Executive Leaders Share Stories of Allyship for Women of Color

One of the best indicators of an organization’s success around diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) is leadership accountability for DEI. At our 2022 Women of Color and Their Allies event, DiversityInc’s Head of Strategic Partnerships, Anita Ricketts, was joined on stage by leaders who are holding themselves and their contemporaries…

The Dollar Divide

Too Poor to Die: The Rising Cost of Funerals 

Death is expensive.  For more than two decades, I have extensively written and reported about money-related content and even I was surprised at the cost of my mother’s funeral.  The median cost of a funeral with a viewing and burial is approximately $7,848. That doesn’t include the cost of the…