COVID vaccination – 5 factors that influence the decision

Everyone has been talking about COVID vaccines for a long time, most of them want the vaccine, but they want to choose for themselves. What can influence their decision?

Although various vaccines are among the greatest public health achievements of the twentieth century — one of the most cost-effective ways to prevent many diseases — in any event, mistrust of vaccines was ranked by the World Health Organization in 2019 as one of the top ten threats to global health. Thus, vaccine hesitation, which is a growing concern in Europe and around the world, is not a new problem linked to the coronavirus epidemic.

Kiss Laura a psychologist examines from a health psychological point of view what factors influence the propensity to vaccinate.

Photo: MTI / Márton Mónus

  1. Threat assessment

“The first time I give myself, I get the vaccine because I’m constantly surrounded by people because of my work.” “I’m unlikely to catch the coronavirus, I’ve never had the flu in my life.” Below the vaccine articles, you can read such and similar comments. The willingness to vaccinate is therefore affected by how likely we think we are to catch the virus. The severity of the disease and its consequences also affects our decision.

I can’t catch the virus because my elderly mother is very sick and I can’t risk her health by infecting her either. Nor can I afford to be on long-term sick pay. ” “My ex-colleague, who is my age, caught the crown, coughed a little for three days, and is now acorn-healthy.” While the first person rated the illness and its (family, financial) consequences as severe, the second perceived it as lower (the perceived word suggests that our ideas may even deviate from reality.)” – says Kiss Laura psychologist.

  1. Perceived gains and barriers

“When I’m finally protected, I’ll meet my grandmother again, walk into the office, I’m not afraid on the bus.” Many people are voicing what they will be doing after they have been vaccinated. They focus on the gains they perceive, trusting that after gaining the necessary protection, they can live a freer life again and interact with others. The perceived gains therefore increase the likelihood of vaccination.

In contrast, perceived barriers — that is, the practical and psychological “costs” associated with vaccination — reduce the propensity to vaccinate. Examples include fear of the discomfort and pain caused by vaccination, or time spent on treatment.

Photo: MTI

  1. What if I regret it !?

According to the psychologist, many are influenced by the thought of unpleasant feelings in their decision — that is, whether to give the vaccine to themselves — that they may later regret not getting vaccinated now.

  1. “My lung doctor acquaintance said…” – What do the reference people say?

“Reference people are all those whose opinions are important to us for some reason. How they think about getting the vaccine affects whether we use it ourselves. We may be influenced by the opinions of our family members and friends, but in order to make a responsible decision and to reduce possible obstacles and fears, it is important to choose reference people consciously. That is why it is worth turning to our acquaintances and general practitioners with a medical degree”He adds Kiss Laura. This is because healthcare workers can be the most reliable source of information. Because of their privileged position, they are best able to understand our potential hesitation, they are best able to respond professionally to our concerns, and they are also best able to explain the benefits of vaccinations (i.e., reduce the perceived barriers mentioned above and increase perceived gains in decision-making).

Photo: MTI

  1. Health communication campaigns, posters, newspaper articles

Finally, it is perhaps not surprising that we are also affected by health communication campaigns, posters and newspaper articles that want to target us. Balanced, accurate orientation and targeted knowledge acquisition clearly have a good effect on the uptake of vaccinations. In contrast, ignorance, misinformation, or even misconceptions can have just the opposite effect.

The reasons for making decisions about vaccines are complex, so in addition to those listed, there may be other emotional, cultural, social, or political factors in how we approach the issue of administering a coronavirus vaccine, writes psychologist Kiss Laura in her article.

Coronavirus – Four vaccines are now given

Source: Napidoktor by

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