They are two of the most important questions of our time. How well informed are people about Covid-19 vaccine? Would they accept a vaccination when it is offered? Two weeks ago, we launched an online survey to test local opinion. More than 650 people responded.
The results are strongly in favour of vaccination. More than four in five respondents said they would accept a vaccination as soon as it is offered. A smaller number said they would wait until more information is available. Only one in twenty people would reject a Covid-19 vaccination at any point.
The survey also shows that there is still a lot of work to do in explaining Covid vaccines, especially to those under 45 years old.
Reviewing the survey data this morning, Tracey Huffer said:
“These results are reassuring. They pretty much match what we are hearing in medical practice. The good news is that most people will take up a vaccination when it is offered, especially among the more vulnerable older group.”
I agree. We are though concerned about the need to ensure that people get adequate information on vaccines. If eight in ten people in our area get vaccinated during 2021 our community will be much better protected against a disease that has attacked the health of too many people, killed so many people and wreaked havoc with economies locally, nationally and globally.
Based on what you know now, would you accept a vaccination?
We asked: Based on what you know now, would you; Accept a Covid-19 vaccination as soon as it is available; Reject a Covid-19 vaccination now and in the future; Wait until you know more about Covid-19 vaccination.
The results are encouraging. Four in five people would accept a vaccination as soon as it is offered (81%). Another fourteen per cent want more information. Only one in 20 respondents will reject a vaccination now and in the future. There is no major difference between male and female respondents.
Younger people are much more inclined to wait for more information rather than accept a vaccination as soon as it is offered (40%). Nine in ten people aged 75 years or over will take up a vaccination offer as soon as it is available.
How well do you feel informed about the proposed Covid vaccines?
More than half of respondents say they are not well informed about Covid-19 vaccines: (poorly informed 9%; somewhat informed 42%). That’s not surprising with a novel virus and a novel vaccine but it suggests there is still much to do in explaining the vaccine, how it works and how it will be delivered.
There is only small gender difference. Nearly half of men say they are well informed about the vaccine (48%), compared to 45 per cent of women.
There are notable differences by age. Only a quarter of people aged 25 to 44 years say they are well informed. In comparison, 53 per cent of respondents aged 65 years or older are well informed (58% M, 49% F).
Respondents by age and gender
The survey drew 656 responses. There is a clear age bias in the responses, with nine in ten respondents being 45 years or older (91%). That reflects the audience for andybodders.co.uk.
More women than men responded (61% F, 38.0% M). That may well reflect the well documented trend for women to pay greater attention to health issues and their health than men.
The national picture
A study by Imperial College in mid-November reported that 65% of UK respondents would or probably would have a Covid-19 vaccination in 2021 (full data). This willingness dropped to 54% when respondents were asked if they would have a vaccination this week if it was made available. The questions are different in detail but the results are similar. Willingness to take up a vaccine increases with age. Men are a little more willing to take up a vaccine offer than women (67% M, 62% F).