DOI: 10.3390/healthcare10112284">

Utilizing listening sessions to assess COVID-19 vaccine acceptance among Asian Americans in Michigan

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Health Sciences

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SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) hospitalizations and deaths have been in the forefront of healthcare and public health for the past two years. Despite widespread vaccinations campaigns, infection rates and serious illness and death remain high among immigrant and minority communities. There are many factors that increase the risk of hospitalization and death, including overall health of the individual as well as environmental and socioeconomic factors. Seven virtual listening sessions with 39 Asian American adults were conducted to assess acceptance of COVID-19 vaccines. Lack of access, confusion on eligibility, distrust of mass vaccination sites, and fear of long-term side effects were primary barriers to vaccine acceptance. Perspectives on the vaccines varied by ethnic groups, with Bangladeshi and Yemeni participants more likely to have negative views. Our findings show that while national statistics of the broad category “Asian” indicate higher COVID-19 vaccination rates than other minority groups, there are Asian ethnic groups that may not follow these trends. These groups are important to prioritize as they may be at increased risk for exposure and severe illness. However, these groups can be difficult to access for reasons such as language barriers and cultural norms. Information from these listening sessions was used to create resources and programs to clarify misconceptions and increase access to COVID-19 vaccines.


O. Ford and A. J. Rainville are faculty members in EMU's School of Health Sciences.

T.-Y. Wu is a faculty member in EMU's School of Health Sciences.

^R. Bessire is an EMU staff member.

Link to Published Version

DOI: 10.3390/healthcare10112284