Half of Maryland residents would not take a federally approved coronavirus vaccine today even if it were offered free, a new poll found.

The Goucher Poll released Tuesday also found widespread concern in Maryland about contracting the coronavirus. About 7 in 10 people say they are either “somewhat” or “very” concerned about themselves or a loved one getting sick.

People age 35 to 54 are more likely than their older or younger counterparts to say they would decline a vaccine, with 59 percent saying they would not take it if it were available today.

Mileah Kromer, a political science professor at Goucher College and director of the poll, said the reluctance is a product of conflicting messages from the White House, politicians and leading scientists about vaccine development. President Trump has pushed for a vaccine to be approved before Election Day.

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