Background: The development of COVID-19 vaccines is crucial in the fight against the pandemic; however, vaccine hesitancy was a growing concern amplified by the rapid development of COVID-19 vaccines. This review aims to explore the underlying factors influencing vaccine acceptance and hesitancy, including socio-demographic characteristics and health beliefs.
Methods: We conducted a scoping review to examine literature and major factors impacting people's willingness to take COVID-19 vaccines. A literature search was performed using four major literature databases: Medline®, Embase®, CINAHL®, and Scopus®. A total of 30 articles fit the predetermined criteria for this sample search. The articles were independently screened to identify the study location, sampling method, study design, and enablers and barriers to vaccination.
Results: Studies were included from five different continents and the findings indicating the following six main areas had significant impact on COVID-19 vaccine acceptance: (1) vaccine safety and efficacy, (2) trust in government and political views, (3) COVID-19 risk perception, (4) cultural factors, (5) knowledge about COVID-19 and public health messaging, and (6) income level and vaccine cost. Various studies had conflicting results highlighting the influence of environmental factors and the need for unique and targeted public health interventions.
Conclusion: Identifying and understanding factors that affect vaccine uptake can aid in the development of effective strategies to improve public health. Our findings suggest that additional efforts should be made by healthcare personnel and public health officials in terms of educating the public and understanding the influence of environmental and personal belief factors. Financial barriers should also be carefully considered to overcome accessibility issues in countries where healthcare is not funded by the government.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.