Interest in COVID-19 vaccine waning

New Newsy/Ipsos poll shows COVID-19 pandemic has bolstered support for public health funding, but not in the form of a tax increase

The author(s)
  • Mallory Newall Vice President, US, Public Affairs
  • Sara Machi Research Analyst, Public Affairs
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Washington, DC, September 25, 2020 – More than half of Americans would be interested in receiving a COVID-19 vaccine, if approved by the FDA, according to a new Newsy/Ipsos poll. However, this number represents a 13-point drop from late July. Furthermore, while most report being more likely to support increased federal funding for vaccine development, diseases prevention measures, and public health organizations due to the coronavirus pandemic, the American public is more divided on whether they are now more or less likely to support tax increases to aid public health.

Detailed Findings   

Fewer Americans report interest in receiving a COVID-19 vaccine, compared to late July. This is true for people on both sides of the political aisle.

  • Currently, 56% report they would be interested in getting a coronavirus vaccine that is approved for use by the FDA (34% are not). Less than two months ago, 69% said the same thing.
  • Interest has waned among men and women, among all age groups (but especially those under 55), and with both Democrats and Republicans.
  • Currently, 64% of Democrats and 55% of Republicans report being very or somewhat interested in an FDA-approved vaccine, compared to 81% and 63%, respectively, in July.

The coronavirus pandemic has had a positive impact on support for expanded public health funding and initiatives, but doing so in the form of a direct tax increase remains a tough sell.

  • A majority of Americans say the pandemic has made them more likely to support increased federal funding for each of the following: vaccine development/testing (55%), disease prevention measures such as testing and contact tracing (55%), and public health organizations (51%).
  • By more than two-to-one, Americans are also more likely to support Medicare for All (48%), rather than less likely (21%), due to the pandemic.
  • Around one-third (35%) are more likely to support a tax increase to directly fund public health organizations, while 29% are less likely. Twenty-six percent say the pandemic has made no difference in their level of support. However, more Americans under age 39 (millennials and Gen Z) are in favor of tax increase to fund public health – 42% say the pandemic has made them more likely to support this effort.

Regarding the upcoming election, Americans have a great deal of concern around the impact of everything from fake news, to voter fraud, to COVID-19. Compared to late July, slightly more are concerned about mail-in ballot fraud, while fewer are concerned about COVID-19 ’s impact.

  • While most Americans are concerned about these items, concerns vary widely by partisan affiliation. Democrats are significantly more likely to be concerned about the impact of COVID-19, foreign interference, and vote suppression. Republicans are more worried about fake news, voter fraud, and mail-in ballot fraud.
  • Currently, 72% of Americans are concerned about the coronavirus’ impact on the election, down from 79% in July. Fifty-nine percent are worried about the impact of mail-in voting fraud, compared to 54% then.

Listen to reporting from Newsy here and read the full article here


About the Study   

These are some of the findings of an Ipsos poll conducted between September 18-22, 2020, on behalf of Newsy. For this survey, a sample of 2,010 adults age 18+ from the continental U.S., Alaska, and Hawaii was interviewed online in English. This poll is trended against Newsy/Ipsos polls conducted between:

• July 24-29, 2020, with a sample of 2,015 U.S. adults,

• February 21-25, 2020, with a sample of 2,010 adults,

• And December 16-17, 2019, with a sample of 1,005 adults.

The sample for this study was randomly drawn from Ipsos’ online panel (see link below for more info on “Access Panels and Recruitment”), partner online panel sources, and “river” sampling (see link below for more info on the Ipsos “Ampario Overview” sample method) and does not rely on a population frame in the traditional sense. Ipsos uses fixed sample targets, unique to each study, in drawing a sample. After a sample has been obtained from the Ipsos panel, Ipsos calibrates respondent characteristics to be representative of the U.S. Population using standard procedures such as raking-ratio adjustments. The source of these population targets is U.S. Census 2018 American Community Survey data. The sample drawn for this study reflects fixed sample targets on demographics. Posthoc weights were made to the population characteristics on gender, age, race/ethnicity, region, and education.

Statistical margins of error are not applicable to online non-probability polls. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error and measurement error. Where figures do not sum to 100, this is due to the effects of rounding. The precision of Ipsos online polls is measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the poll has a credibility interval of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points for all respondents. Ipsos calculates a design effect (DEFF) for each study based on the variation of the weights, following the formula of Kish (1965). This study had a credibility interval adjusted for design effect of the following (n=2,010, DEFF=1.5, adjusted Confidence Interval=+/-4.0 percentage points).

The polls fielded between July 24-29 and February 21-25, 2020, have a credibility interval of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points, and the poll fielded between December 16-17, 2019, has a credibility interval of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.

For more information on this news release, please contact:     

Mallory Newall 
Director, US   
Public Affairs   
+1 202 420-2014   
[email protected]     

Kate Silverstein 
Media Relations Specialist, US   
Public Affairs   
+1 718 755-8829
[email protected] 

About Ipsos   

Ipsos is the world’s third largest market research company, present in 90 markets and employing more than 18,000 people.   

Our passionately curious research professionals, analysts and scientists have built unique multi-specialist capabilities that provide true understanding and powerful insights into the actions, opinions and motivations of citizens, consumers, patients, customers or employees. We serve more than 5000 clients across the world with 75 business solutions.   

Founded in France in 1975, Ipsos is listed on the Euronext Paris since July 1st, 1999. The company is part of the SBF 120 and the Mid-60 index and is eligible for the Deferred Settlement Service (SRD).    ISIN code FR0000073298, Reuters ISOS.PA, Bloomberg IPS:FP          


The author(s)
  • Mallory Newall Vice President, US, Public Affairs
  • Sara Machi Research Analyst, Public Affairs