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PLoS One. 2016 Jun 3;11(6):e0156118. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0156118. eCollection 2016.

Understanding Vaccine Hesitancy in Canada: Results of a Consultation Study by the Canadian Immunization Research Network.

Author information

1
Département de médecine sociale et préventive, Université Laval, Québec, Québec, Canada.
2
Maladies infectieuses, Institut national de santé publique du Québec, Québec, Québec, Canada.
3
Maladies infectieuses et immunitaires, Centre de recherche du CHU de Québec-Université Laval, Québec, Québec, Canada.
4
Vaccine Evaluation Center, BC Children's Hospital, and University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
5
Département des sciences de la santé communautaire, Université de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, Québec, Canada.
6
Department of Microbiology & Immunology, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.
7
Clinical Epidemiology Program, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.
8
Department of Pediatrics, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.
9
Département de médecine familiale et de médecine d'urgence, Université Laval, Québec, Québec, Canada.
10
Santé des populations et pratiques optimales en santé, Centre de recherche du CHU de Québec-Université Laval, Québec, Québec, Canada.
11
Nursing Faculty, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
12
Department of Pediatrics, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada.
13
Department of Psychology, University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario, Canada.
14
Département d'Histoire, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Québec, Canada.
15
Division of Infectious Diseases, Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
16
Département de pédiatrie, Service de néonatologie, Université de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, Québec, Canada.
17
Department of Community Health Sciences, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada.
18
Department of Production Animal Health, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada.
19
Alberta Health Services, Calgary, Alberta, Canada.
20
Department of Mathematics and Statistics, York University, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
21
School of Public Health and Health Systems, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.
22
Department of Community Health Sciences, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.
23
School of Journalism and Communication, Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.
24
Department of History, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.

Abstract

"Vaccine hesitancy" is a concept now frequently used in vaccination discourse. The increased popularity of this concept in both academic and public health circles is challenging previously held perspectives that individual vaccination attitudes and behaviours are a simple dichotomy of accept or reject. A consultation study was designed to assess the opinions of experts and health professionals concerning the definition, scope, and causes of vaccine hesitancy in Canada. We sent online surveys to two panels (1- vaccination experts and 2- front-line vaccine providers). Two questionnaires were completed by each panel, with data from the first questionnaire informing the development of questions for the second. Our participants defined vaccine hesitancy as an attitude (doubts, concerns) as well as a behaviour (refusing some / many vaccines, delaying vaccination). Our findings also indicate that both vaccine experts and front-line vaccine providers have the perception that vaccine rates have been declining and consider vaccine hesitancy an important issue to address in Canada. Diffusion of negative information online and lack of knowledge about vaccines were identified as the key causes of vaccine hesitancy by the participants. A common understanding of vaccine hesitancy among researchers, public health experts, policymakers and health care providers will better guide interventions that can more effectively address vaccine hesitancy within Canada.

PMID:
27257809
PMCID:
PMC4892544
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0156118
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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