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1.
Vaccine ; 2022 Oct 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2086814

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Polarized debates about Covid-19 vaccination and vaccine mandates for healthcare workers (HCWs) challenge Belgian HCWs ability to discuss Covid-19 vaccine sentiments with peers and patients.Although studies have identified drivers of HCWs vaccine hesitancy, they do not include effects of workplace interactions and have not addressed consequences beyond vaccine coverage. METHODS: Interviews and focus group discussions with 74 HCWs practicing in Belgium addressed Covid-19 vaccine sentiments and experiences of discussing vaccination with peers and patients. RESULTS: Most participating HCWs reported difficulties discussing Covid-19 vaccination with peers and patients. Unvaccinated HCWs often feared that expressing their vaccine sentiments might upset patients or peers and that they would be suspended. Consequently, they used social cues to evaluate others' openness to vaccine-skeptical discourses and avoided discussing vaccines. Surprisingly, some vaccine-confident HCWs hid their vaccine sentiments to avoid peer and patient conflicts. Both vaccinated and unvaccinated HCWs observed that unvaccinated patients occasionally received suboptimal care. Suboptimal care was central in unvaccinated HCW unwillingness to express their vaccine sentiments to peers. Both vaccinated and unvaccinated HCWs described loss of trust and ruptured social relations with peers and patients holding divergent vaccine sentiments. DISCUSSION: Belgian HCW perceived Covid-19 vaccines as a risky discussion topic and engaged in "strategic silences" around vaccination to maintain functional work relationships and employment in health institutions. Loss of trust between HCW and peers or patients, along with suboptimal patient care based on vaccination status, threaten to weaken Belgium's, and by implication, other health systems, and to catalyze preventable disease outbreaks.

2.
Vaccine ; 40(9): 1191-1197, 2022 02 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1757898

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 vaccine rollout has offered a powerful preventive measure to help control SARS-CoV-2 transmission. Nevertheless, long-standing public hesitation around vaccines heightened concerns that vaccine coverage would not achieve desired public health impacts, particularly in light of more contagious variants. This cross-sectional survey was conducted online just before the European vaccine rollout in December 2020 among 7000 respondents (aged 18-65) in Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Sweden, and Ukraine. The survey included open text boxes for fuller explanation of responses. Overall, 56.9% of respondents would accept a COVID-19 vaccine, 19.0% would not, and 24.1% did not know or preferred not to say. By country, between 44% (France) and 66% (Italy) of respondents would accept a COVID-19 vaccine. Respondents expressed conditionality in open responses, voicing concerns about vaccine safety and mistrust of authorities. We highlight lessons learned about the dynamism of vaccine conditionality and persistence of safety concerns.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Vaccines , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , COVID-19 Vaccines , Cross-Sectional Studies , Humans , Middle Aged , SARS-CoV-2 , Vaccination , Young Adult
3.
JMIR Infodemiology ; 1(1): e27472, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1477702

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic has been widely described as an infodemic, an excess of rapidly circulating information in social and traditional media in which some information may be erroneous, contradictory, or inaccurate. One key theme cutting across many infodemic analyses is that it stymies users' capacities to identify appropriate information and guidelines, encourages them to take inappropriate or even harmful actions, and should be managed through multiple transdisciplinary approaches. Yet, investigations demonstrating how the COVID-19 information ecosystem influences complex public decision making and behavior offline are relatively few. OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to investigate whether information reported through the social media channel Twitter, linked articles and websites, and selected traditional media affected the risk perception, engagement in field activities, and protective behaviors of French Red Cross (FRC) volunteers and health workers in the Paris region of France from June to October 2020. METHODS: We used a hybrid approach that blended online and offline data. We tracked daily Twitter discussions and selected traditional media in France for 7 months, qualitatively evaluating COVID-19 claims and debates about nonpharmaceutical protective measures. We conducted 24 semistructured interviews with FRC workers and volunteers. RESULTS: Social and traditional media debates about viral risks and nonpharmaceutical interventions fanned anxieties among FRC volunteers and workers. Decisions to continue conducting FRC field activities and daily protective practices were also influenced by other factors unrelated to the infodemic: familial and social obligations, gender expectations, financial pressures, FRC rules and communications, state regulations, and relationships with coworkers. Some respondents developed strategies for "tuning out" social and traditional media. CONCLUSIONS: This study suggests that during the COVID-19 pandemic, the information ecosystem may be just one among multiple influences on one group's offline perceptions and behavior. Measures to address users who have disengaged from online sources of health information and who rely on social relationships to obtain information are needed. Tuning out can potentially lead to less informed decision making, leading to worse health outcomes.

4.
BMJ Open ; 11(1): e042579, 2021 01 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1050400

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Voluntary organisations provide essential support to vulnerable populations and front-line health responders to the COVID-19 pandemic. The French Red Cross (FRC) is prominent among organisations offering health and support services in the current crisis. Comprised primarily of lay volunteers and some trained health workers, FRC volunteers in the Paris (France) region have faced challenges in adapting to pandemic conditions, working with sick and vulnerable populations, managing limited resources and coping with high demand for their services. Existing studies of volunteers focus on individual, social and organisational determinants of motivation, but attend less to contextual ones. Public health incertitude about the COVID-19 pandemic is an important feature of this pandemic. Whether and how uncertainty interacts with volunteer understandings and experiences of their work and organisational relations to contribute to Red Cross worker motivation is the focus of this investigation. METHODS AND ANALYSIS: This mixed-methods study will investigate volunteer motivation using ethnographic methods and social network listening. Semi-structured interviews and observations will illuminate FRC volunteer work relations, experiences and concerns during the pandemic. A questionnaire targeting a sample of Paris region volunteers will allow quantification of motivation. These findings will iteratively shape and be influenced by a social media (Twitter) analysis of biomedical and public health uncertainties and debates around COVID-19. These tweets provide insight into a French lay public's interpretations of these debates. We evaluate whether and how socio-political conditions and discourses concerning COVID-19 interact with volunteer experiences, working conditions and organisational relations to influence volunteer motivation. Data collection began on 15 June 2020 and will continue until 15 April 2021. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: The protocol has received ethical approval from the Institut Pasteur Institutional Review Board (no 2020-03). We will disseminate findings through peer-reviewed articles, conference presentations and recommendations to the FRC.


Subject(s)
Community Health Services/organization & administration , Motivation , Red Cross , Volunteers/psychology , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/therapy , France , Humans , Public Health , Qualitative Research , Research Design , Social Media
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