The number of Americans who say they are willing to get vaccinated for coronavirus increased in October to 58%, just before two new effective vaccines were announced.
Faith in a coronavirus vaccine plummeted in September, with just 50% of Americans saying they would be open to the vaccine, but that number rebounded last month amid increasing infections nationwide.
The Gallup polling, which was done between Oct. 19 and Nov. 1, came just before the early trial results of two effective vaccines were released.
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On Monday, Moderna said its vaccine appears to be 94.5% effective. Last week, Pfizer said its vaccine is 90% effective.
Dr. Anthony Fauci said the extraordinary results were better than most people expected.
“When I spoke to you last time and we were talking about vaccines, I told you that I would feel good if we had a 70% to 75% effective vaccine, which if we combine that with public health measures, we could have an impact on the outbreak,” Fauci told NPR Tuesday.
“Ninety-four percent for this and more than 90% for the Pfizer candidate, to me, is a very, very important advance in our armamentarium of trying to stop this outbreak.”
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Both Moderna and Pfizer are now seeking emergency use approval from the FDA, which means the vaccines could be available to certain groups by the end of 2020. Those most at risk to coronavirus will get the vaccine first, which includes groups like the elderly and health care workers.
Of the 42% of Americans who said they are not willing to get the vaccine, 37% said the rushed development is the main reason they feel that way. About a fourth, 26%, said they are waiting until it is confirmed to be safe, and another 12% said they just don’t trust vaccines in general.
News of the effective vaccines comes amid increasing cases nationwide. More than 11 million Americans have been infected and 246,965 have died from the disease, according to Johns Hopkins University data.
More than 1 million of those cases were counted in the past week.
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According to The COVID Tracking Project, 73,014 Americans are currently hospitalized.
Though the vaccines are good news, Fauci told CNN Sunday that he “would recommend to people to not abandon all public health measures just because you have been vaccinated.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.