Fear of COVID-19 predicts vaccination willingness 14 months later

G. Mertens*, P. Lodder, T. Smeets, S. Duijndam

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)
86 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Vaccines are an important tool for governments and health agencies to contain and curb the Coronavirus Disease-19 (COVID-19) pandemic. However, despite their effectiveness and safeness, a substantial portion of the population worldwide is hesitant to get vaccinated. In the current study, we examined whether fear of COVID-19 predicts vaccination willingness. In a longitudinal study (N = 938), fear for COVID-19 was assessed in April 2020 and vaccination willingness was measured in June 2021. Approximately 11% of our sample indicated that they were not willing to get vaccinated. Results of a logistic regression showed that increased fear of COVID-19 predicts vaccination willingness 14 months later, even when controlling for several anxious personality traits, infection control perceptions, risks for loved ones, self-rated health, previous infection, media use, and demographic variables. These results show that fear of COVID-19 is a relevant construct to consider for predicting and possibly influencing vaccination willingness. Nonetheless, sensitivity and specificity of fear of COVID-19 to predict vaccination willingness were quite low and only became slightly better when fear of COVID-19 was measured concurrently. This indicates that other potential factors, such as perceived risks of the vaccines, probably also play a role in explaining vaccination willingness.
Original languageEnglish
Article number102574
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Anxiety Disorders
Volume88
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2022

Keywords

  • APPEALS
  • COVID-19
  • Fear
  • HEALTH ANXIETY INVENTORY
  • Hesitancy
  • INTOLERANCE
  • PSYCHOMETRIC PROPERTIES
  • SINGLE-ITEM MEASURES
  • UNCERTAINTY
  • VACCINES
  • VALIDATION
  • VALIDITY
  • Vaccination
  • WORRY

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