Prevalence and Potential Determinants of COVID-19 Vaccine Hesitancy and Resistance in Qatar
Ali, Amal Aawadalla Mohamed
Le Trung, Kien
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Global COVID-19 pandemic containment necessitates understanding the risk of hesitance or resistance to vaccine uptake in different populations. The Middle East and North Africa currently lack vital representative vaccine hesitancy data. We conducted the first representative national phone survey among the adult population of Qatar, between December 2020 and January 2021, to estimate the prevalence and identify potential determinants of vaccine willingness: acceptance (strongly agree), resistance (strongly disagree), and hesitance (somewhat agree, neutral, somewhat disagree). Bivariate and multinomial logistic regression models estimated associations between willingness groups and fifteen variables. In the total sample, 42.7% (95% CI: 39.5-46.1) were accepting, 45.2% (95% CI: 41.9-48.4) hesitant, and 12.1% (95% CI: 10.1-14.4) resistant. Vaccine resistant compared with hesistant and accepting groups reported no endorsement source will increase vaccine confidence (58.9% vs. 5.6% vs. 0.2%, respectively). Female gender, Arab ethnicity, migrant status/type, and vaccine side-effects concerns were associated with hesitancy and resistance. COVID-19 related bereavement, infection, and quarantine status were not significantly associated with any willingness group. Absence of or lack of concern about contracting the virus was solely associated with resistance. COVID-19 vaccine resistance, hesitance, and side-effects concerns are high in Qatar's population compared with those globally. Urgent public health engagement should focus on women, Qataris (non-migrants), and Arab ethnicity.
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