Giving Compass' Take:
- Asher Lehrer-Small analyzes why the gender gap in COVID-19 vaccination for adults, with women getting vaccinated more often than men, is less prevalent among youth.
- What accounts for the gender gap in vaccination for adults? Why is this gender gap less pronounced for youth?
- Read about vaccine equity and gender equity.
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As young people continue to line up for coronavirus shots, the gender breakdown appears, well, surprisingly even.
Compared to a persistent gap between adult men and women in vaccination rates, with women rolling up their sleeves considerably more than men nationwide, early data indicate that the split has been far less pronounced among youth.
In Rhode Island, as of early June, young people had seen only a 4 percentage point difference between males and females in COVID-19 immunization, according to numbers provided by the Rhode Island Department of Health, compared to a 7 percentage point gap among the state’s population at large. On the same timescale in Vermont, the gender split was even narrower, at 2 percentage points among vaccinated youth, according to Vermont Department of Health statistics, compared to 6 percentage points among all vaccinated individuals.
Nicolette Carrion, a first-year at Georgetown University from Nassau County, New York, understands the numbers as being due to “generational difference.”
Young people today are “brought up in a different society,” Carrion told The 74. Not only are kids eager to socialize and connect with peers, but living through a pandemic has helped raise their social consciousness from an early age.
“From what I’ve seen, the care for other people, I think it’s a whole different level,” she said.
Among youth, the gender gap in immunization appears to shrink further when students have increased access to vaccinations.
In Carrion’s home county on Long Island, schools launched a youth vaccination campaign complete with student ambassadors to answer peers’ questions about the shots. Amid their immunization push, rates of inoculation stood virtually even, with 50.1 percent of shots going to young women and 49.9 percent going to young men, according to data provided by the county in late May. East Hartford, Connecticut, which hosted a senior “skip day” for vaccinations in late April, immunized 130 female students and 134 males, the district said.
Read the full article about the gender gap in vaccination by Asher Lehrer-Small at The 74.