Vaccine Hesitancy of Health-Care Workers: Another Challenge in the Fight Against COVID-19 in Istanbul

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Yilmaz S., ÜNAL ÇOLAK F., Yilmaz E., Ak R., Hokenek N. M., Altintas M. M.

DISASTER MEDICINE AND PUBLIC HEALTH PREPAREDNESS, vol.16, no.3, pp.1134-1140, 2022 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 16 Issue: 3
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.1017/dmp.2021.257
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus, PASCAL, CAB Abstracts, CINAHL, EMBASE, MEDLINE
  • Page Numbers: pp.1134-1140
  • Keywords: COVID-19, pandemic, vaccine hesitancy, health-care workers, INFLUENZA VACCINATION, ATTITUDES
  • Anadolu University Affiliated: Yes


Objective: Health-care workers (HCWs) are often seen as the most reliable source of vaccine-related information for their patients; nevertheless, various studies show that HCWs experience vaccine hesitation. In this study, the aim was to determine the reasons for vaccine hesitation among HCWs working in a large public hospital and its affiliated units in Istanbul. Methods: A descriptive method for collecting qualitative data was designed for this study. The data of the HCWs were analyzed in line with the vaccine hesitancy factors put forward by the World Health Organization (WHO). Results: The most important vaccine hesitancy theme that emerged was the fear and lack of confidence in the vaccines, which was expressed at a higher rate than any other theme in all HCWs. The most cited reason for fear/lack of confidence in the vaccine was the fear of its side effects. It was observed that the HCWs who reported hesitation about vaccination due to pregnancy and breastfeeding consisted of women. The second most common theme for vaccine hesitation was reported as an inconvenience in accessing the vaccines. Although HCWs have priority, they stated that their reason for vaccine hesitancy was due to heavy personal issues or workloads. The final theme was about complacency, or thinking they do not need the vaccine. Conclusions: Vaccine hesitation is a challenge that can be overcome with detailed monitoring and policy-making. Although the vaccine seems to be more significant, we do not want to see vaccine hesitancy grow more than the vaccine itself.