Approaches of the Physicians on COVID-19 Vaccination: An Online Survey from Turkiye

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DOĞAN C. Z., Yucel K. T., KARA E., KAYNAR E. K., Demirkan K., ÜNAL S.

FLORA INFEKSIYON HASTALIKLARI VE KLINIK MIKROBIYOLOJI DERGISI, vol.27, no.3, pp.453-465, 2022 (ESCI) identifier identifier


Introduction: Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is caused by a newly discovered coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2. The Turkish govern-ment has planned to procure COVID-19 vaccine through multiple agencies and companies in order to vaccinate at least 75% of the population. Physicians' beliefs and attitudes to COVID-19 vaccines are important for the immunization rate of the public. This study aimed to evaluate the vaccination approaches of the Turkish physicians against COVID-19.Materials and Methods: This study was conducted as an online survey between 15.01.2021-12.02.2021, among mainly infectious disease and internal medicine physicians in Turkiye. The survey included questions on the demographics of physicians and their approaches toward vaccination against COVID-19.Results: Among the 486 participants, 34.6% were internal medicine physicians and 17.5% were infectious diseases physicians. Total acceptance rate of the COVID-19 vaccine among physicians was 89.9%. Physicians who stated having sufficient information about COVID-19 vaccines had a higher rate of COVID-19 vaccine recommendation to their patients compared to those who stated not having sufficient information (95.8% vs 86.7%, p= 0.011). Physicians with concerns about adverse effects or efficacy of the COVID-19 vaccine had a lower rate of COVID-19 vaccine recommendation to their patients/relatives/friends (p< 0.001). Female and younger physicians were more concerned about the adverse effects of the COVID-19 vaccine (p< 0.05). Recommendation of COVID-19 vaccine was higher among physicians with confidence in having sufficient information and without concern about efficacy of the vaccine. Conclusion: Since physicians have an important role in providing information and reducing COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy among the community, improvement in the knowledge and concerns of physicians should be considered.