Abstract

Sickle cell disease (SCD), which occurs primarily in individuals of African descent, has been identified as a preexisting health condition for COVID-19 with higher rates of hospitalization, intensive care unit admissions, and death. National data indicate Black individuals have higher rates of vaccine hesitancy and lower COVID-19 vaccination rates. Understanding the key predictors of intention to receive a COVID-19 vaccine is essential as intention is strongly associated with vaccination behavior. This multisite study examined attitudes, beliefs, intentions to receive COVID-19 vaccines, and educational preferences among adolescents, young adults, and caregivers of children living with SCD. Participants completed an online survey between July 2021 and March 2022. Multivariate logistic regression was used to examine the association between participant age and COVID-19 vaccine attitudes, beliefs, and vaccine intentions. Of the 200 participants, 65.1% of adolescents, 62.5% of young adults, and 48.4% of caregivers intended to receive a COVID-19 vaccine for themselves or their child. Perception that the vaccine was safe was statistically significant and associated with patient and caregiver intention to receive the COVID-19 vaccine for themselves or their child. Participant age was also statistically significant and associated with the intent to get a booster for patients. Study findings highlight key concerns and influencers identified by patients with SCD and their caregivers that are essential for framing COVID-19 vaccine education during clinical encounters. Study results can also inform the design of messaging campaigns for the broader pediatric SCD population and targeted interventions for SCD subpopulations (eg, adolescents, caregivers).

Full Text
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