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Racial and Ethnic Variation in COVID-19 Vaccination Uptake Among Medicare Beneficiaries with Cancer History

J Racial Ethn Health Disparities. 2022 Sep 23. doi: 10.1007/s40615-022-01415-2. Online ahead of print.


BACKGROUND: The purpose of this study was to estimate COVID-19 vaccination rate among Medicare beneficiaries with cancer history and determine whether COVID-19 vaccine uptake is higher among non-Hispanic White beneficiaries compared with racially and ethnically minoritized beneficiaries.

METHODS: We used US representative, cross-sectional data from the Medicare Current Beneficiary Survey COVID-19 Winter 2021 Rapid Response Community Supplement Survey. A total of 1,863 respondents with self-reported cancer history (other than skin cancer) were included. The outcome was self-reported receipt of at least one coronavirus vaccine dose since vaccines became available. The key independent variable of interest was self-reported race and ethnicity. We applied sample weights to account for the survey design and provide population estimates to 9.6 million beneficiaries with cancer history. Weighted descriptive statistics and multivariable logistic regression analyses were conducted.

RESULTS: During the first 4 months of vaccine availability, 69.6% of beneficiaries received at least one vaccine dose of which 65.4% had two vaccine doses. A larger proportion of non-Hispanic White beneficiaries (71.9%) had at least one vaccine dose compared with non-Hispanic Black (60.4%) and Hispanic (57.4%) beneficiaries. An estimated 30.4% of beneficiaries were still unvaccinated, that represents approximately 2.9 million unvaccinated beneficiaries with cancer history. Hispanic beneficiaries were 42% (OR: 0.58; 95% CI: 0.33-0.99; p = .048) less likely to be vaccinated compared with non-Hispanic White beneficiaries.

CONCLUSIONS: Results indicate racial and ethnic differences in vaccine uptake among Medicare beneficiaries with cancer history. Effective strategies are needed to help increase vaccine confidence and uptake among adults with cancer history.

PMID:36149576 | DOI:10.1007/s40615-022-01415-2

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