COVID-19 Vaccine Hesitancy among Young Adults in Saudi Arabia: A Cross-Sectional Web-Based Study
Ending the COVID-19 pandemic requires achieving herd immunity, either by previous infection or by vaccination. However, concerns about the COVID-19 vaccine are growing around the globe. The current study was conducted to investigate young the adult population’s hesitancy towards the vaccine. The study used a prospective cross-sectional design. Data was collected using an online self-administered questionnaire. A total of 862 Saudi adults participated. Information was gathered on the participants’ perspectives towards the severity and susceptibility of the COVID-19 infection, reasons for their hesitancy to receive the vaccine, perceived benefits, and reasons for action. Just under a quarter (19.6%) of respondents had previously tested positive for COVID-19. A small minority of the participants had already received the vaccine (2.1%), while 20.3% had registered in the Sehaty app (application) to receive the vaccine. Just under half of them (48%) will take the vaccine when mass vaccination is achieved and approximately the same number (46.7%) will only take it if it is made mandatory. Vaccine reluctance is highly prevalent among the general public in Saudi Arabia during the COVID-19 pandemic. While many are aware of a high likelihood of getting the infection, the efficacy and safety of the COVID-19 vaccine were reported as barriers to vaccination.