Correlates of COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy in Austria: Trust and the government

Eva Schernhammer, Jakob Weitzer, Manfred D. Laubichler, Brenda M. Birmann, Martin Bertau, Lukas Zenk, Guido Caniglia, Carlo C. Jäger, Gerald Steiner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: With the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic surging and new mutations evolving, trust in vaccines is essential. Methods: We explored correlates of vaccine hesitancy, considering political believes and psychosocial concepts, conducting a non-probability quota-sampled online survey with 1007 Austrians. Results: We identified several important correlates of vaccine hesitancy, ranging from demographics to complex factors such as voting behavior or trust in the government. Among those with hesitancy towards a COVID-19 vaccine, having voted for opposition parties (opp) or not voted (novote) were (95% Confidence Intervall (CI)opp, 1.44-2.95) to 2.25-Times (95%CInovote, 1.53-3.30) that of having voted for governing parties. Only 46.2% trusted the Austrian government to provide safe vaccines, and 80.7% requested independent scientific evaluations regarding vaccine safety to increase willingness to vaccine. Conclusions: Contrary to expected, psychosocial dimensions were only weakly correlated with vaccine hesitancy. However, the strong correlation between distrust in the vaccine and distrust in authorities suggests a common cause of disengagement from public discourse.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)E106-E116
JournalJournal of Public Health
Volume44
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2022

Keywords

  • COVID-19
  • behaviour
  • communicable diseases
  • vaccine hesitancy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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