Public trust in CDC drops across all demographics during pandemic

UPI News
UPI News
Flawed vaccine disbursement is one of many factors cited in a decline in public trust in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Photo by Jim Ruymen/UPI | License Photo

April 5 (UPI) -- While Americans may be divided on many issues, they seem to be in agreement on this: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention could be doing a better job during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Rand Corp. released a survey Monday reporting a decline in public trust for the CDC across all demographics.

While low trust in CDC was previously held only by Black Americans, trust during the pandemic has fallen throughout the entire U.S. population.

The survey of 2,000 Americans, conducted in May through October, found a decrease in confidence in the CDC of about 10 percent.

In comparison, confidence in the U.S. Postal Service and the Federal Emergency Management Agency have grown over that same period, according to the survey.

"The Biden administration will have an uphill battle in rehabilitating trust in the CDC at this critical junction in the coronavirus pandemic," said Michael Pollard, lead author of a study reporting the survey results.

Incidents in which the CDC was cast in a bad light include mixed messaging over COVID-19 protocol, technical problems with testing and vaccine disbursement and interference from the former Trump administration.

Conspiracy theories and misinformation have also led to "medical distrust," according to the survey.

A reported 1 in 4 parents have said they will not vaccinate their children against COVID-19 in another sign of distrust.

While that demographic saw the largest decline, public trust in the CDC decreased across all demographics, including all ethnicities, age groups, political beliefs and urban and rural communities.

"In the end, there is remarkable consistency and convergence in reported levels of trust in the CDC across these subgroups after the declines, with the exception of the vote intention comparisons," according to a press release on the survey.

On the political spectrum, supporters of former President Donald Trump saw a marked decrease in trust of the CDC, while those who voted for President Joe Biden showed a less significant decline.

Voters who did not support either candidate saw the largest decline.

According to the survey, those 65 and older saw a lower decrease in confidence than those 64 and under.

The country's White population saw the largest decrease in confidence followed by respondents identifying as Hispanic or Black.

Rural dwellers reported a sightly higher degree of satisfaction with the CDC.

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