Measuring Vaccine Confidence: Introducing a Global Vaccine Confidence Index

Larson HJ, Schulz WS, Tucker JD, Smith DM. PLoS Curr. 2015 Feb 25;7. 

Public confidence in vaccination is vital to the success of immunisation programmes worldwide. Understanding the dynamics of vaccine confidence is therefore of great importance for global public health. Few published studies permit global comparisons of vaccination sentiments and behaviours against a common metric. This article presents the findings of a multi-country survey of confidence in vaccines and immunisation programmes in Georgia, India, Nigeria, Pakistan, and the United Kingdom (UK) - these being the first results of a larger project to map vaccine confidence globally.

Data were collected from a sample of the general population and from those with children under 5 years old against a core set of confidence questions. All surveys were conducted in the relevant local-language in Georgia, India, Nigeria, Pakistan, and the UK. We examine confidence in immunisation programmes as compared to confidence in other government health services, the relationships between confidence in the system and levels of vaccine hesitancy, reasons for vaccine hesitancy, ultimate vaccination decisions, and their variation based on country contexts and demographic factors.

The numbers of respondents by country were: Georgia (n=1000); India (n=1259); Pakistan (n=2609); UK (n=2055); Nigerian households (n=12554); and Nigerian health providers (n=1272). The UK respondents with children under five years of age were more likely to hesitate to vaccinate, compared to other countries. Confidence in immunisation programmes was more closely associated with confidence in the broader health system in the UK (Spearman's ρ=0.5990), compared to Nigeria (ρ=0.5477), Pakistan (ρ=0.4491), and India (ρ=0.4240), all of which ranked confidence in immunisation programmes higher than confidence in the broader health system. Georgia had the highest rate of vaccine refusals (6 %) among those who reported initial hesitation. In all other countries surveyed most respondents who reported hesitating to vaccinate went on to receive the vaccine except in Kano state, Nigeria, where the percentage of those who ultimately refused vaccination after initially hesitating was as high as 76%) Reported reasons for hesitancy in all countries were classified under the domains of "confidence," "convenience," or "complacency," and confidence issues were found to be the primary driver of hesitancy in all countries surveyed.

MMLAP and other EU Projects

Health system analysis to support capacity development in response to the threat of pandemic influenza in Asia
Making society an active participant in water adaptation to global change
Public Participation in Developing a Common Framework for Assessment and Management of Sustainable Innovation
Engaging all of Europe in shaping a desirable and sustainable future
Expect the unexpected and know how to respond
Driving innovation in crisis management for European resilience
Effective communication in outbreak management: development of an evidence-based tool for Europe
Solutions to improve CBRNe resilience
Network for Communicable Disease Control in Southern Europe and Mediterranean Countries
Developing the framework for an epidemic forecast infrastructure
Strengthening of the national surveillance system for communicable diseases
Surveillance of vaccine preventable hepatitis
European monitoring of excess mortality for public health action
European network for highly infectious disease
Dedicated surveillance network for surveillance and control of vaccine preventable diseases in the EU
Modelling the spread of pandemic influenza and strategies for its containment and mitigation
Cost-effectiveness assessment of european influenza human pandemic alert and response strategies
Bridging the gap between science, stakeholders and policy makers
Promotion of immunization for health professionals in Europe
Towards inclusive research programming for sustainable food innovations
Addressing chronic diseases and healthy ageing across the life cycle
Medical ecosystem – personalized event-based surveillance
Studying the many and varied economic, social, legal and ethical aspects of the recent developments on the Internet, and their consequences for the individual and society at large
Get involved in the responsible marine research and innovation
Knowledge-based policy-making on issues involving science, technology and innovation, mainly based upon the practices in Parliamentary Technology Assessment
Assessment of the current pandemic preparedness and response tools, systems and practice at national, EU and global level in priority areas
Analysis of innovative public engagement tools and instruments for dynamic governance in the field of Science in Society
Public Engagement with Research And Research Engagement with Society
Computing Veracity – the Fourth Challenge of Big Data
Providing infrastructure, co-ordination and integration of existing clinical research networks on epidemics and pandemics
Promote vaccinations among migrant population in Europe
Creating mechanisms for effectively tackling the scientific and technology related challenges faced by society
Improve the quality of indoor air, keeping it free from radon
Improving respect of ethics principles and laws in research and innovation, in line with the evolution of technologies and societal concerns
Investigating how cities in the West securitise against global pandemics
Creating a structured dialogue and mutual learning with citizens and urban actors by setting up National Networks in 10 countries across Europe
Identifying how children can be change agents in the Science and Society relationship
Establishing an open dialogue between stakeholders concerning synthetic biology’s potential benefits and risks
Transparent communication in Epidemics: Learning Lessons from experience, delivering effective Messages, providing Evidence