● 13% of older Americans are completely unvaccinated against COVID-19, while an additional 14% are fully vaccinated but have not received a booster, and 3% report having received a single shot of Moderna or Pfizer.
● The CDC data on vaccination rates are clearly significantly flawed, because they indicate that there are more older Americans who have received at least one dose of vaccine than there are older Americans. This is because they attribute the boosters (and perhaps second shots) that many people have received to being first shots, likely due to poor vaccination record linkage for those individuals. As a result, CDC data likely understate how many people are completely unvaccinated and how many people have received boosters, and overstate the number of individuals who have received only a single dose.
● The unvaccinated and unboosted are disproportionately less educated, lower-income, rural, and Republican.
● The main reasons cited by older Americans for being unvaccinated were worries about side effects and a lack of trust in the process by which the vaccines were developed, similar to concerns we found in an earlier report on the reasons reported by the unvaccinated for their vaccination decision.
● In the open-ended responses, many of the vaccinated but unboosted indicated an openness to getting a booster but cited obstacles or a lack of urgency to do so.