Sociodemographic predictors of COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy and leading concerns with COVID-19 vaccines among pregnant women at a South Texas clinic.J Matern Fetal Neonatal Med. 2022 Dec; 35(26):10368-10374.JM
COVID-19 vaccination rates among pregnant women remain low, despite increased risk of COVID-19-related illness and death and demonstrated vaccine safety and efficacy in this population. The objective of this study is to identify sociodemographic predictors of COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy and elucidate important concerns among the pregnant population in light of evolving conversations regarding COVID-19.
A prospective survey of pregnant women at a single urban clinic in South Texas was conducted August to September 2021 to identify predictors of COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy among the pregnant population. Collected variables included demographics, COVID-19 beliefs, tetanus-diphtheria-pertussis (Tdap)/influenza vaccine hesitancy, and primary vaccine concerns. Statistical analyses included Fisher's exact test, asymptotic two-sample Brown-Mood median test, and multinomial logistic regression.
One hundred and nine participants completed the survey, 35 vaccinated and 74 unvaccinated, with a response rate of 91.6%. Women who were COVID-19 vaccine hesitant were more likely to be younger (28.0 vs. 31.0 years, p < .004) and further along in pregnancy (30.0 vs. 20.0 weeks, p = .001). They were also more likely to report influenza (odds ratio (OR) 6.3; 95% confidence interval (CI) 2.5-17.1) and Tdap (OR 4.1; 95% CI 1.75-10.7) vaccine hesitancy. Furthermore, women who were vaccine hesitant were more likely to believe they did not have enough information to confidently make their decision (OR 4.0; 95% CI 1.4-11.4). Primary concerns with COVID-19 vaccines included: short- and long-term side effects on the pregnancy, personal long-term side effects, and harmful ingredients.
COVID-19 vaccine hesitant pregnant women were more likely to be younger, hesitant toward other vaccines, and concerned with pregnancy impact and harmful ingredients. Personal knowledge of other vaccinated pregnant women was associated with significantly higher vaccine acceptance rates. Access to vaccines and concerns about quality control were not cited as reasons for vaccine hesitancy, in contrast to earlier studies on this topic.