COVID 19 Vaccination Related Misconceptions and Myths
Background: Mass vaccination is the most effective way to fight against COVID 19 but a significant number of people are unwilling to be vaccinated, mainly due to misinformation and false beliefs, associated with this drive. The objective of this study was to identify these misconceptions and myths and associate them with sociodemographic factors.
Methodology: This cross sectional survey was conducted on 562 residents of Rawalpindi and Islamabad from July 2021 to November 2021. Data was collected through structured questionnaire both in English and Urdu, analysed by SPSS version 23. χ2-test was used to check the association of categorical data with sociodemographic factors.
Results: Out of all the participants, 328 (58.4%) had received COVID19 vaccination. Among these vaccinated individuals, 81.8% were graduates or above and 74.2% had family income more than Rs.50,000. Out of total, 40.7% respondents believed that, vaccine is harmful for diabetics, hypertensive and heart patients, 40.6% agreed that it is not safe for pregnant or lactating women and 40.4% assumed that they have acquired immunity through natural infection. A strong association of misconceptions and myths was found with residence (p value 0.0001), educational level (p value 0.0010) and monthly income (p value 0.0001).
Conclusion: Several misconceptions and myths are related with COVID 19 vaccination, strongly influenced by various socio demographic. Hence, there is a need to launch various campaigns regarding the safety and effectiveness of vaccination.
Key words: COVID-19, Misinformation, Vaccine
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