Poll: How much vaccine hesitancy are you seeing?

Now that Australia has begun vaccinating against COVID-19, we’d like to know how confident your patients are feeling about the jab

On Sunday, Health Minister Greg Hunt announced that after only four full days of operation – plus last Monday, which was a “setup” day – almost 30,000 Australians have now been vaccinated against the novel coronavirus.

But as reported in mainstream media such as the Herald Sun, a significant number of Australians either do not want to be vaccinated against COVID-19, or are actively protesting against it.

Reporters Shannon Deery and Brendan Rees wrote on Sunday that police are keeping an eye on a “hit list” of anti-vaccination protesters, who they are worried might take action against the rollout.

This follows the high-profile case in the US of hospital pharmacist Steven R Brandenburg, who is reportedly to plead guilty to tampering with COVID-19 vaccine doses to spoil them, and who has been reported to hold anti-vaccination beliefs.

An AJP poll conducted late last year showed that 35% of respondents (267 people at the time of poll wrapup) were not comfortable receiving a COVID-19 vaccine.

Last week we reported on the launch of a new vaccine eligibility tool, put together by the Australasian College of Pharmacy and the Pharmacy Guild, Queensland Branch, which will help people find out when they may be able to access the vaccine.

Reader comments on this article suggest that vaccine hesitancy around the new jab may be greater than health professionals have seen before.

“I don’t know about others, but I am running into a LOT of vaccine hesitancy. Especially in the age brackets that are susceptible. This is going to be interesting,” wrote reader Philip Smith.

Others agreed.

“Good lord yes,” wrote reader Andrew.

And Greg Meaghan wrote that, “Yes, I am as well. I am not sure if the hesitant people are more vocal? Perhaps when we start getting into it and we have done a few hundred thousand it will ease?”

We’d like to know what you’ve seen and heard in your pharmacies… tell us in our poll below.

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