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Predictors of COVID-19 Vaccination among Veterans Experiencing Homelessness.
Balut MD, Chu K, Gin JL, Dobalian A, Der-Martirosian C. Predictors of COVID-19 Vaccination among Veterans Experiencing Homelessness. Vaccines. 2021 Nov 3; 9(11).
Sufficient uptake of the COVID-19 vaccine is key to slowing the spread of the coronavirus among the most vulnerable in society, including individuals experiencing homelessness. However, COVID-19 vaccination rates among the Veteran homeless population are currently unknown. This study examines the COVID-19 vaccination rate among homeless Veterans who receive care at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), and the factors that are associated with vaccine uptake. Using VA administrative and clinical data, bivariate and multivariate analyses were conducted to identify the sociodemographic, health-related, and healthcare and housing services utilization factors that influenced COVID-19 vaccine uptake during the first eight months of the vaccine rollout (December 2020-August 2021). Of the 83,528 Veterans experiencing homelessness included in the study, 45.8% were vaccinated for COVID-19. Non-white, older Veterans (65+), females, those who received the seasonal flu vaccine, and Veterans with multiple comorbidities and mental health conditions were more likely to be vaccinated. There was a strong association between COVID-19 vaccination and Veterans who utilized VA healthcare and housing services. VA healthcare and homeless service providers are particularly well-positioned to provide trusted information and overcome access barriers for homeless Veterans to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.