Lack of knowledge about the COVID-19 vaccine led to hesitation in pregnant women
Lack of knowledge about the COVID-19 vaccine led to hesitation in pregnant women

Lack of knowledge about the COVID-19 vaccine led to hesitation in pregnant women

When the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine began, pregnant women hesitated to roll up their sleeves for shots, according to a study by the University of California, Davis.

In it examination, published in the journal Vaccine, a team of researchers examined 387 pregnant Californians to gather views and reasons for being vaccinated against COVID-19. The web-based study was conducted between December 2020 and January 2021, shortly after the first COVID-19 vaccines were granted emergency use in the United States.

‘I do not know enough’

Survey results showed that 98.7% of participants were aware of the newly developed vaccine, but more than half hesitated to be vaccinated, and 43% of respondents reported that they planned to receive the vaccine as soon as it was offered to them. The remaining 57% were hesitant. Of those, 27% answered that they would not receive the vaccine as soon as it was offered and 30% were unsure.

The most common reaction to being hesitant was: ” I do not know enough about the vaccine. Leigh Ann Simmons, professor of human ecology and lead author of the study, said that because pregnant women were not included in the initial vaccine trials, it was reasonable for these respondents to be hesitant to be vaccinated.

“It was not surprising that a lack of knowledge about the vaccine was high on the list,” Simmons said. “The timing of the study was right when the vaccine came out, and without studies of pregnant women, it makes sense that this concern existed.”

Decision making during pregnancy

The study also showed that respondents trusted that healthcare providers, including doctors and nurses, provided them with information about the vaccine. Simmons said moving forward now that pregnant women are starting to be included in vaccine trials, public health authorities and individual health care providers should work together to provide more vaccine information to patients. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, vaccine trials with pregnant women are now underway or planned.


“There is a group of people who are hesitant, but that does not mean they are not getting the vaccine,” she said. “If information about the vaccine is communicated in a way that people themselves can understand it, then they can make an informed decision for themselves and their babies.”

The study also found that essential worker status was associated with hesitation with vaccines. The results showed that 56% of the required workers were hesitant, compared to 44% of the non-necessary workers who were hesitant.

Refusing the seasonal flu shot was also very predictable for the hesitation of COVID-19 vaccination. The results showed that 78 participants said that they had not received, nor did they intend to receive, a flu vaccine. Of those, 90% were also hesitant about the COVID-19 vaccine. However, of the remaining 287 participants who said they had either received or intended to receive a flu shot, 46% were reluctant to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. Simmons suggested that it was not that these individuals were hesitant to receive any vaccine while pregnant, but rather hesitant about the COVID-19 vaccine specifically.

According to the authors of the study, terms such as “vaccine hesitant” and “anti-wax” do not adequately represent decisions related to being vaccinated because the hesitation in this test was mostly related to the uncertainty about the vaccine’s effect on pregnancy and the fetus. development.

“We like to put people in boxes very quickly, and that’s probably one of the least useful things we can do in public health, because the moment we categorize people, we’ve lost an opportunity to educate,” said Simmons. “It’s about meeting people where they are and we have a long way to go.”

Reference: Simmons LA, Whipps MDM, Phipps JE, Satish NS, Swamy GK. Understanding COVID-19 vaccine intake during pregnancy: ‘Hesitation’, knowledge and evidence-based decision making. Vaccine. 2022; 40 (19): 2755-2760. doi: 10.1016 / j.vaccine.2022.03.044

This article has been republished from the following materials. Note: material may have been edited for length and content. For further information, please contact the cited source.

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