50% of Americans know little or nothing about omicron boosters: KFF survey

Updated omicron boosters have been available since late August, though just 17 percent of Americans say they have heard "a lot" about the updated shots, according to Kaiser Family Foundation's latest COVID-19 Vaccine Monitor survey

The findings were published Sept. 30 and are based on a survey that was conducted online and by telephone from Sept. 15-26 among a nationally representative survey of 1,534 U.S. adults. 

Thirty-one percent of respondents said they know "a little" about the updated boosters, while 20 percent said they had heard "nothing at all" about the shots. 

The CDC recommends the bivalent COVID-19 booster for all fully vaccinated people ages 12 and older. The omicron-targeting shots were highly anticipated by federal health officials as a key strategy to stave off infection and severe illness, but uptake has been weak. 

"America is not rushing out to get the new booster," Drew Altman, president of KFF, told The New York Times. "Most are only dimly aware of it, which is not surprising in a country that seems to have mostly moved on," he said, adding that, "The exception may be older folks, who are at greater risk and are more interested in the new booster." 

Overall, 5 percent of adults said they had already received the updated booster, and 27 percent said they intend to do so "as soon as possible." The figures were higher among those 65 and older, with 8 percent of respondents in that age group saying they have already gotten the omicron booster and 37 present saying they plan to as soon as possible. 

View the full survey findings here

 

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