COVID ‐19 vaccination coverage and vaccine hesitancy among Australians with disability and long‐term health conditions

Aitken, Zoe and Emerson, Eric and Kavanagh, Anne Marie (2022) COVID ‐19 vaccination coverage and vaccine hesitancy among Australians with disability and long‐term health conditions. Health Promotion Journal of Australia. ISSN 1036-1073 (In Press)

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Abstract

Issue addressed COVID-19 vaccination is the cornerstone of managing Australia's COVID-19 pandemic and the success of the vaccination program depends on high vaccination coverage. This paper examined differences in COVID-19 vaccination coverage and vaccine hesitancy for people with disability, long-term health conditions, and carers – subgroups that were prioritised in Australia's vaccination program. Methods Using data from 2,400 Australians who participated in two waves of the Taking the Pulse of the Nation survey in April and May 2021, we described vaccination coverage and hesitancy among people with disability, severe mental health conditions, severe long-term health conditions, frequent need for assistance with everyday activities, and carers. Results Vaccination coverage was estimated to be 8.2% in the sample overall and was similar for people with disability, those with frequent need for assistance, and carers. It was higher for people with severe long-term health conditions (13.4%) and lower for people with severe mental health conditions (4.3%). Vaccine hesitancy was high overall (35.6%) and was similarly high across the priority groups, with only small differences for people with disability, severe long-term health conditions and frequent need for assistance. Conclusions This study highlights a lack of difference in vaccination coverage for people with disability, long-term health conditions, and carers compared to the general population. So what? Sub-optimal vaccination coverage for people in the priority groups leaves many people at significant risk of serious disease or death if exposed to COVID-19, particularly in light of easing of disease-control restrictions across Australia and the emergence of new variants.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Health Promotion Journal of Australia
Uncontrolled Keywords:
/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/2900/2905
Subjects:
ID Code:
183114
Deposited By:
Deposited On:
04 Jan 2023 14:00
Refereed?:
Yes
Published?:
In Press
Last Modified:
04 Jan 2023 14:00