Fewer Americans see vaccines as important, Gallup poll says

A Gallup poll conducted at the end of 2019 showed 84% of Americans think vaccinating children is important, which is down from 94% in 2001.

The poll, which was based on telephone interviews that took place from Dec. 2-15, 2019, questioned 1,025 adults living in all 50 states. Its key findings included that fewer Americans see vaccines as important, 86% said vaccines are not more dangerous than the disease they prevent and 46% were unsure whether or not vaccines cause autism. Nearly 45% of Americans said vaccines do not cause autism, and 10% said vaccines do cause autism.

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Gallup said a large majority of Americans agree with the science that proves vaccines are safe and having children vaccinated is important; however, there is enough uncertainty among the public concerning a potential link between autism and vaccines that could potentially decrease the number of parents complying with pediatric vaccine recommendations and threaten what is known as "herd immunity." Herd immunity is when a sufficient percentage of the population is vaccinated, around 93%, ensuring that even those who cannot be vaccinated for medical reasons are protected.

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Gallup also reported substantial partisan differences, with 55% of Democrats saying vaccines do not cause autism, compared with 37% of Republicans.

The data can be found at gallup.com.
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