A paucity of data exists evaluating a guardian's intent to vaccinate their child against COVID-19 in the United States. We administered 102 first (April-November 2020) and 45 second (December-January 2020-2021) surveys to guardians of children (<18 years) who had a laboratory-confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19 and assessed their intent to give a COVID-19 vaccine to their child, when one becomes available. The first and second surveys of the same cohort of guardians were conducted before and following the press releases detailing the adult Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna Phase 3 results. Both surveys included an intent-to-vaccinate question using the subjective language of "if a safe and effective vaccine" became available, and a second question was added to second surveys using the objective language of "would prevent 19 of 20 people from getting disease". When using subjective language, 24 of 45 (53%) guardians endorsed vaccine administration for their children in the first survey, which decreased to 21 (46%) in the second survey. When adding objective language, acceptance of vaccination increased to 31 (69%, p = 0.03). Common reasons for declining vaccination were concerns about adverse effects and/or vaccine safety. Providing additional facts on vaccine efficacy increased vaccine acceptance. Evidence-based strategies are needed to increase pediatric COVID-19 vaccine uptake.
Keywords: COVID-19; SARS-CoV-2; children; intent-to-vaccinate; mRNA; pediatrics; vaccine hesitancy.