57% indicate vaccine hesitancy increased for ALL vaccines during the pandemic
primarily due to lack of trust, confusion and misinformation
WASHINGTON – May 8, 2023 – To offer insight about employer health benefit concerns and plans once the COVID-19 national and public health emergency declarations end on May 11, the National Alliance of Healthcare Purchaser Coalitions (National Alliance) conducted a survey of almost 30 employers representing approximately 1.5 million employees.
“The pandemic has reinforced the critical role of immunizations in workforce health strategy but it also raised newfound concerns, confusion and misinformation.” said Michael Thompson, National Alliance president and CEO. “With the end of the public health emergency, employers expect to double down on education and employee engagement to encourage vaccinations across the board.”
Additional findings include:
- While 76% agreed that keeping up-to-date based on current COVID guidelines is core to their immunization strategies going forward, 81% agreed that the pandemic has increased the urgency of focusing on all vaccinations for employees and their families
- 96% of respondents agreed that employee engagement in primary care was a critical health strategy to improve immunization uptake
- 81% believe that employers are a trusted source for vaccine information compared to 62% for health plans
- Most significant contributors impacting employees to not be fully vaccinated – lack of trust in vaccines (71% for COVID and 33% for other immunizations), confusion or misinformation (71% for COVID and 29% for other), and safety and efficacy concerns (57% for COVID and 24% for other)
- With the end of the public health emergency, only 14% are planning to cover over-the-counter tests at 100% and 33% will not cover; going forward COVID treatment will be covered consistent with similar non-COVID services by 71% and another 24% envision covering at 100%
- In tracking immunization rates, 79% of employers have vaccine information rates for their workforce on COVID, and 63% have information on influenza vaccinations
- Given the recent ruling by a federal judge in Texas invalidating much of the Affordable Care Act’s coverage of preventive care without cost sharing, 72% expect to continue providing coverage for all preventive services at 100%; 6% expect to be more selective; and 22% did not know how they would approach coverage for preventive care services
The online poll of 29 employers that are members of coalitions affiliated with the National Alliance – Greater Philadelphia Business Coalition on Health, Midwest Business Group on Health, and Washington Health Alliance, was conducted from April-May 2023. Purchasers ranged in size from very large (33%, 10,000+), to large (21%, 1,000-9,999) to mid-size (17%, less than 1,000).
The full Immunization Prevention Survey results can be found here.
2023 Leadership Summits
This research will be among the topics of discussion at the National Alliance 2023 Leadership Summits, June 28-29 in Nashville, Tenn. The event brings together employers, coalitions and other healthcare thought leaders to share industry insights to tackle today’s most pressing workplace opportunities and challenges. Learn more and register.
About National Alliance of Healthcare Purchaser Coalitions
The National Alliance of Healthcare Purchaser Coalitions (National Alliance) is the only nonprofit, purchaser-aligned organization with a national and regional structure dedicated to driving health and healthcare value across the country. Its members represent private and public sector, nonprofit, and Taft-Hartley organizations, and more than 45 million Americans, spending over $400 billion annually on healthcare. To learn more, visit nationalalliancehealth.org and connect on Twitter and LinkedIn.
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