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UHC Publishes Policy Brief on Paid Sick Leave and COVID-19 Vaccination Rates

Chart showing monthly vaccination coverage in 37 US cities, by paid sick leave policy and age group, 2021

December 1, 2022

Paid sick leave policies can be a key tool to increase COVID-19 vaccination rates among frontline and low-income workers. Because the U.S has no federal paid sick leave policies, about one in five workers are unable use this benefit to get vaccinated for COVID-19 or to recover from vaccine side effects.

Building on previous research on the effects of COVID-19 in U.S. cities, UHC researchers found that paid sick leave policies in cities are associated with higher COVID-19 vaccination coverage among working-age people and narrower disparities in vaccination rates among neighborhoods. This effect was strongest in the most socially vulnerable neighborhoods.

This brief includes implications for city and state policymakers and stakeholders who are evaluating strategies to increase COVID-19 vaccination rates in working-age people and decrease vaccination coverage disparities.

View the Brief