Willingness to get vaccinated against Covid-19: profiles and attitudes towards vaccination

Roselinde Kessels, Jeroen Luyten, Sandy Tubeuf*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Working paper / PreprintWorking paper

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Abstract

Background: The uptake of a Covid-19 vaccine will be instrumental in limiting the spread of the disease as herd immunity requires coverage of up to 80% of the population.
Purpose: To identify the predictors associated with the willingness to get vaccinated against Covid-19 once a vaccine becomes available, and to investigate whether they coincide with the predictors of attitudes towards vaccination in general.
Methods: A representative sample of 2,060 Belgians were surveyed between 6 and 16 October 2020.
Results: 34% (n=651) of the participants reported that they will definitely vaccinate against Covid-19 once a vaccine is available and 39% (n=742) that they would “probably” vaccinate. A multivariate analysis found that increased intended uptake was strongly associated with age, opinion on the government’s dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic, medical risk and spoken language, and to a lesser extent with sex and having known someone who was hospitalised because of Covid-19. Similar predictors were identified for attitudes to vaccination; however, Covid-19 vaccine hesitancy was more marked in age groups below 54 years old. We further analysed a sample of 17% (n=349) of the participants found favourable to vaccination in general but not willing to vaccinate against Covid-19. These inconsistent people were mainly female, young, French speaking, slightly less educated, and working. They also did not belong to a Covid-19 risk group, were very dissatisfied with the government’s dealing with the Covid-19 crisis, and did not know personally someone who was hospitalized because of Covid-19.
Conclusions: The majority of Belgians intend to vaccinate, though uptake is lower in groups at lower risk of severe forms of Covid-19. While most of the population is aware of the collective welfare of infectious disease vaccination, Covid-19 is not perceived as any infectious disease and exhibits higher levels of vaccination hesitancy. Communication campaigns will need to inform on the safety and efficacy of Covid-19 vaccination to encourage uptake.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationLouvain
PublisherUCLouvain Institute of Economic and Social Research
Pages1-12
Number of pages12
Volume35
Publication statusPublished - 14 Dec 2020

Keywords

  • Belgium
  • Covid-19
  • Hesitancy
  • Immunisation
  • Vaccination

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