Confidence in vaccines on the rise, 76 percent say they want to get vaccinated
A few days after the first injections were made, the willingness to get vaccinated in the Netherlands is high. Three-quarters (76 percent) want to be vaccinated. One in six people (16 percent) would probably reject the vaccine. Eight percent still have doubts. A survey conducted by EenVandaag found this.
The skeptics are particularly concerned about the vaccine’s safety (44 percent), especially the long-term side effects. They would prefer to wait until others have been vaccinated en masse to find out that there are no problems. “I think I want to take the vaccine, but I am glad that I am in the last group. In the meantime, I can see if others have side effects,” said one respondent.
Most of those who still have doubts say they have not received enough information from the government to make an educated decision (77 percent). They want to know more about how the vaccines work and the differences between them.
Some wonder whether it is really necessary for them to get an injection, for example, because they have already had corona or because they feel perfectly healthy. “I trust my immune system and my healthy lifestyle. How necessary is it then?” asks one participant.
The group that is willing to get vaccinated has grown considerably in recent months. In July, this number was 59 percent, and 67 percent in mid-December. Now we are at 76 percent. The group that is sure of its case has also grown considerably compared to December. 63 percent is now definitely convinced, compared to 48 percent in the previous month.
The ubiquitous media attention persuaded many people during the past week. “I now believe that the vaccines are reliable. I want to get rid of the fear of corona, my freedom back,” said one respondent. People do not only get an injection to protect themselves but also to protect others. “To give back to all those old people, like my 90-year-old parents-in-law, a piece of their lives,” added a respondent.
Convinced supporters and opponents
As there are currently few vaccines in the Netherlands, most people will have to wait until at least April before their turn. Proponents of vaccination would rather not wait that long. If it were up to them, three quarters (75 percent) would prefer to get vaccinated in the next three months. Another 13 percent would like to be vaccinated between April and June. Hardly anyone would want to wait beyond that (6 percent).
But not everyone is optimistic about the vaccine. One in six respondents (11 percent) would definitely not get a jab, while 5 percent also leans towards not getting vaccinated. Part of this group is against vaccination in general. Many find the cure worse than the disease. They are not afraid of getting corona and do not trust the vaccines. “I will not be vaccinated against influenza either. Moreover, it has been tested far too quickly. That can only cause side effects, and I am not waiting for that,” said an opponent.
Criticism towards vaccination policy
The willingness to be vaccinated is thus high in the week of ‘V-day’, but at the same time, confidence in the Dutch vaccination policy is relatively low. Half of the respondents have confidence (55 percent), the other half (43 percent) is somewhat skeptical. Many of the survey participants were critical and thought that things were moving ahead too slowly and chaotically. Confidence in the responsible Minister, Hugo de Jonge, is also low at 44 percent. This number has been decreasing steadily since November, when he had a 61 percent approval rating.
Despite the criticism, there is also an understanding that the organization is getting off to a slow start. “It is very complex, and other countries are not doing much better. It is easy to criticize if you are not responsible,” admitted one respondent. The European Medicines Agency EMA, which approved the Moderna vaccine this week, received remarkable support (76 percent).