There is hope for the
The rise of ‘anti-vaxxer’ propaganda online has raised fears thousands of people in the UK could turn down vaccination, which the Government has said it is not planning to make mandatory.
That could threaten the target of vaccinating around 70 per cent of the population, to achieve ‘herd immunity’ which provides some protection from coronavirus for everyone.
There is hope for the coronavirus vaccine roll-out, as a new poll shows just eight per cent of people in the UK would definitely refuse a jab (file image)
However a survey of more than 17,000 people in the UK found only eight per cent of people had decided to definitely remain unvaccinated, in hopeful news as the vaccine developed at Oxford University is days away from potentially being approved.
Indeed, 48 per cent of those polled in October said they would definitely agree to vaccination – putting the UK in the top five countries out of 32 surveyed.
In France, for example, only 13 per cent were convinced they would be inoculated, according to the figures from research agency ORB International, which works with London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.
There has apparently been little sign of reluctance among the first groups in the UK to receive the vaccine from pharmaceutical firm Pfizer.
GP Fari Ahmad told BBC Breakfast yesterday: ‘What’s really interesting is a lot of the over-80s are very happy to have the vaccine.
‘I think they do understand how much of a difference it will make to them individually, and they’re probably the ones that have been shielding, and it’s had a massive impact on them.
‘As we move through the age ranges I certainly think there will be some vaccine hesitancy, but I would hope that people will have seen the benefits of it.’
However the figures from ORB International show vaccine hesitancy is particularly pronounced among women, people living in Greater London and those aged 25 to 34.
Indeed, 48 per cent of those polled in October said they would definitely agree to vaccination – putting the UK in the top five countries out of 32 surveyed (file image)
The data reveals 11 per cent of people are ‘unsure’ and leaning towards refusing a vaccine.
Johnny Heald, managing director at ORB International, said: ‘People are worried about what they are putting into their bodies, or that the vaccines have been developed too quickly, so more effort has to be made to inform them and reassure them.’
A second international survey from the same agency found people in Vietnam were most keen to get vaccinated, with 70 per cent saying they would definitely do so.
India came second, with 58 per cent of people saying they would be inoculated, and this was followed by 54 per cent of people who responded in Brazil.
Reluctance to be vaccinated was high in many European countries, with only a third of people in Italy, a quarter in Spain, and one in five in Poland being prepared to get a vaccine.
The UK poll found people aged 65 and over were most likely to say they would definitely be vaccinated, with almost two-thirds agreeing with this.
Among men, 55 per cent had decided to get a jab.
The highest proportion of people prepared to refuse vaccination, 10 per cent, was seen in Greater London.
At the other end of the scale, only six per cent of people in Wales and Scotland said they would definitely remain unvaccinated.
Among people who were unsure about vaccination, 33 per cent said they were leaning towards being vaccinated, while 11 per cent were leaning towards refusing.