30% of South Africans hesitant to take COVID vaccine over side effects - survey

The data was collected from more 5,600 respondents from the beginning of February to 10 March.

The Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine. Picture: Abigail Javier/Eyewitness News

CAPE TOWN - On average, three out of every 10 South Africans were hesitant about taking a COVID-19 vaccine due to potential side effects.

This was a finding of the National Income Dynamics Study Coronavirus Rapid Mobile Survey.

The data was collected from more 5,600 respondents from the beginning of February to 10 March.

Fifty-five percent of the cohort “strongly agreed” that they would take a COVID-19 vaccine, while 16% “somewhat agreed”.

A further 16% "strongly disagreed" and 8% "somewhat disagreed".

UCT researcher, Tim Köhler: "The main reasons amongst those who are not willing to get a vaccine if one was available to them are predominantly concerns related to side effects of the vaccine, the effectiveness of the vaccine and general opposition against vaccines and safety concerns."

Twenty-nine percent of respondents who were vaccine-hesitant were worried about side effects.

Eight percent of the vaccine-hesitant participants felt that they had a low risk of contracting COVID-19.

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