Qualitative evaluation of reasons for healthcare professionals being unvaccinated against COVID-19

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Kocak E. N., Yuce S., Bayramlar O. F., Canbaz S.

Journal of Public Health (Germany), 2023 (ESCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s10389-023-01822-7
  • Journal Name: Journal of Public Health (Germany)
  • Journal Indexes: Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI), Scopus, CINAHL, EMBASE, Psycinfo
  • Keywords: COVID-19 vaccines, Healthcare professional, Pandemic, Qualitative, Vaccine hesitation
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: Yes


© 2023, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature.Background and Aim: The importance of immunization has increased even more during the pandemic. This study aimed to evaluate the reasons for healthcare professionals not being vaccinated against COVID-19 and to develop solutions for the causes. Subject and Methods: This qualitative study was carried out with in-depth interviews between July 2021 and October 2021, with 32 healthcare professionals and five key people who had never been vaccinated against COVID-19. Results: The most common reasons that healthcare professionals were not vaccinated against COVID-19 were concerns about vaccine side effects, believing that the vaccine is not effective, distrust of the vaccine content and COVID-19 treatment methods, the rapid production of the vaccine, the fact that the vaccine is produced with a new technology, thinking that the vaccine is not the definitive solution, seeing themselves as healthy and young, and the belief that they would have a mild case of the disease and recover. The main themes were COVID-19 vaccine-related reasons, individual reasons/group effects, contextual reasons, and vaccination-related general issues. The main sub-themes were vaccine production, distrust, risk perception, policies and infodemic. Conclusion: It has been seen that the uncertainty, infodemic, and insecurity that emerged especially during the pandemic period are related to each other. As knowledge and awareness about the disease increase, there is an increase in risk perception. For this reason, social information studies should be increased and physicians should be enabled to use media tools more effectively.