Factors Affecting Covid-19 Vaccine Hesitancy in Sweden (2021)
Abstract: Authors: Tatev Nazaryan, Nella Karapetyan Supervisor: Fleura Bardhi Date: May 31st, 2021 Course: BUS39 Degree Project in Global Marketing Keywords: Vaccine Hesitancy, Covid-19 Pandemic, Vaccination, Vaccine refusers, Vaccine deniers, Immunization, Social Marketing Thesis Purpose: The aim of this qualitative study is to understand the factors affecting the Covid-19 vaccine hesitancy phenomenon in Sweden. Theoretical Perspective: Our study adopts the Socio-Ecological Model in order to understand what factors affect hesitancy towards the Covid-19 vaccines. Methodology: Our study employs a qualitative research method and uses a deductive approach to analyze the qualitative data. As a part of the qualitative research method, we conducted in-depth interviews and used a non-probability sampling method, when choosing the sample of prospective participants. Our final sample size consists of 20 individuals aged 18 and older, in Sweden, who are hesitant to take Covid-19 vaccines. Findings/Conclusion: The findings of this paper provide insights on vaccine hesitant individuals or groups in Sweden while distinguishing them into two groups: vaccine deniers and vaccine refusers. The paper, later on, suggests two adopted versions of the SEM model taking into consideration the different behaviors of Covid-19 vaccine deniers and vaccine refusers in Sweden. The first adapted version of the SEM model highlights the effects of the individual socio-ecological factor on vaccine deniers. The second adopted version of the SEM model highlights the individual, interpersonal/community, and public policy factors on vaccine refusers. Practical Implications: Our research study provides several stakeholders, such as the government, the healthcare organizations, and vaccine producing organizations with valuable insights on how to deal with vaccine hesitancy in Sweden. Our recommendation to the government is to work along with healthcare organizations and vaccine producing organizations towards educating vaccine refusers on the safety and effectiveness of the Covid-19 vaccines. In addition, social marketing strategies should be aimed at communicating and promoting the long-term positive effects of the Covid-19 vaccines to vaccine refusers since, over time, they are more likely to change their attitudes and behavior towards the Covid-19 vaccines.
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