VACCINES, vol.10, no.2, 2022 (SCI-Expanded)
Background: The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic continues to wreak havoc on lives and ravage the world. Several vaccines have been approved for use against COVID-19; however, there may be hesitancy and negative perceptions towards vaccination, which may reduce the willingness to be vaccinated. Further, studies assessing the current perception toward COVID-19 vaccination are scarce. This study aimed to assess community knowledge, attitudes, and perceptions regarding COVID-19 vaccines among the general population of Turkey. Methods: A cross-sectional survey was carried out among 1009 adult participants from the 13-20 April 2021. Demographic data were collected, and attitudes and perceptions toward COVID-19 vaccines were evaluated. A multivariable regression analysis was performed to identify the factors predicting perception towards COVID-19 vaccinations. Results: Just over half of participants were male (52.6%) and the majority of respondents were aged between 30 and 39 years (33.8%). Our study revealed that 62.7% of participants had positive perceptions of COVID-19 vaccines. Logistic regression analysis results showed that older people (>= 30 vs. <30) were less likely to have a positive perception towards COVID-19 vaccines (OR = 0.70, 95% CI = 0.51-0.94). We also found participants who had a previous history of influenza vaccines (OR = 2.01, 95% CI = 1.43-2.84), bachelor's degrees or above (OR = 1.47, 95% CI = 1.12-1.91), and a personal history of COVID-19 (OR = 1.58, 95% CI = 1.10-2.26) were more likely to have a positive perception regarding COVID-19 vaccines. Conclusion: The proportion of the general population in Turkey who believe in COVID-19 vaccine effectiveness is not inferior to that of other countries. However, the low positive perception even among the population applying for vaccination indicates that understanding the perception of the general population and its influencing factors may contribute to developing a strategy for improving vaccination rates by addressing these factors.