I-Team 8

Indiana government, IUPUI vaccination survey: Will you vaccinate your children?

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — A researcher conducting a vaccination survey told News 8 that, for Indiana to reach herd immunity, schools will need to require children to be vaccinated.

His question to parents: Will you vaccinate your children or not?  

Sheri Kelso says she has three school-age children, none of whom have been vaccinated against the coronavirus.  

“If I can find a site that has available time slots, probably yes,” said Kelso. 

This answer is exactly what Dr. Nir Menachemi of the Richard Fairbanks School of Public Health at IUPUI is hoping to hear.  

“For every adult that isn’t vaccinated, the large group of children that are still susceptible will always be a threat to the health of Hoosiers, so all paths to herd immunity include vaccinating a maximum number of children,” said Menachemi. 

To find out how many parents are planning to get their children vaccinated, Menachemi put together a five-page survey. The survey from the Indiana State Department of Health and the Fairbanks School takes about 10 minutes and is completely anonymous.   

“Some of the questions asked are ‘what are you planning to do’ and ‘if you are planning to vaccinate your kids, which of the following things are the reason why and if you are not which of the following things are the reasons why you are not,’” said Menachemi. 

If parents are not planning to vaccinate their children, the survey takes them a little bit further. Ultimately, researchers want to use the information to get as many people vaccinated as possible.  

“What do you think about the idea of setting up vaccine sites at schools? Would you be interested in that occurring?” said Menachemi.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the chief medical adviser for President Joe Biden, said he expects more data on the safety of the vaccines for children to be available later this year.  “By the time we get to the end of this calendar year and the first quarter of 2022 we will have enough information regarding safety to be able to vaccinate children of any age.”

The results of the survey are expected later this summer and will be released before the start of the school year. 

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