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1.
PLoS One ; 17(2): e0263351, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1793531

ABSTRACT

Pandemics, such as the current SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, represents a health threat to humans worldwide. During times of heightened health risks, the public's perceptions, and acceptance of evidence-based preventive measures, such as vaccines, is of high relevance. Moreover, people might seek other preventive remedies to protect themselves from getting infected (e.g., herbal remedies, nutritional supplements). A recent study on consumers' preference for naturalness showed that people put more weight on perceived naturalness of a preventive remedy compared to a curative one. This result was attributed to the increased focus on perceived effectiveness as opposed to perceived risk. This raises the question whether the current pandemic would shift people's perceptions from prevention to curing and thus, exhibit a preference for synthetic remedies because they are seen as more effective. The present online experiment (conducted in April 2021) investigated people's perceptions of vaccines and remedies within the context of the current SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. A 2x2 between-subject design with type of remedy (natural vs. synthetic) and salience of SARS-CoV-2 pandemic (high vs. low) was conducted in Switzerland in spring 2021 (N = 452). The data did not provide evidence of a curative mindset for preventive remedies, as the participants exhibited a clear preference for the natural remedy compared to the synthetic remedy. Our study stresses the importance of understanding people's mindsets on how to protect themselves from infection with a virus during an ongoing pandemic to tackle misinformation and vaccine hesitancy.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/psychology , Patient Acceptance of Health Care/psychology , /psychology , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines/pharmacology , Communication , Consumer Behavior , Dissent and Disputes , Female , Humans , Information Dissemination , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics/prevention & control , Patient Acceptance of Health Care/statistics & numerical data , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Switzerland , Vaccination , Vaccines
2.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 119(13): e2118721119, 2022 03 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1751829

ABSTRACT

SignificanceThe challenge of securing adherence to public health policies is compounded when an emerging threat and a set of unprecedented remedies are not fully understood among the general public. The evolution of citizens' attitudes toward vaccination during the COVID-19 pandemic offers psychologically and sociologically grounded insights that enrich the conventional incentives- and constraints-based approach to policy design. We thus contribute to a behavioral science of policy compliance during public health emergencies of the kind that we may increasingly face in the future. From early in the pandemic, we have tracked the same individuals, providing a lens into the conditions under which people's attitudes toward voluntary and mandated vaccinations change, providing essential information for COVID-19 policy not available from cross-section data.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Dissent and Disputes , Patient Acceptance of Health Care , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Vaccination , COVID-19 Vaccines/administration & dosage , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , Humans , Public Health Surveillance
4.
Clin Infect Dis ; 74(8): 1429-1441, 2022 Apr 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1700299

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Despite the availability of safe and efficacious coronavirus disease 2019 vaccines, a significant proportion of the American public remains unvaccinated and does not appear to be immediately interested in receiving the vaccine. METHODS: In this study, we analyzed data from the US Census Bureau's Household Pulse Survey, a biweekly cross-sectional survey of US households. We estimated the prevalence of vaccine hesitancy across states and nationally and assessed the predictors of vaccine hesitancy and vaccine rejection. In addition, we examined the underlying reasons for vaccine hesitancy, grouped into thematic categories. RESULTS: A total of 459 235 participants were surveyed from 6 January to 29 March 2021. While vaccine uptake increased from 7.7% to 47%, vaccine hesitancy rates remained relatively fixed: overall, 10.2% reported that they would probably not get a vaccine and 8.2% that they would definitely not get a vaccine. Income, education, and state political leaning strongly predicted vaccine hesitancy. However, while both female sex and black race were factors predicting hesitancy, among those who were hesitant, these same characteristics predicted vaccine reluctance rather than rejection. Those who expressed reluctance invoked mostly "deliberative" reasons, while those who rejected the vaccine were also likely to invoke reasons of "dissent" or "distrust." CONCLUSIONS: Vaccine hesitancy comprises a sizable proportion of the population and is large enough to threaten achieving herd immunity. Distinct subgroups of hesitancy have distinctive sociodemographic associations as well as cognitive and affective predilections. Segmented public health solutions are needed to target interventions and optimize vaccine uptake.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Vaccines , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines , Cross-Sectional Studies , Dissent and Disputes , Female , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , United States/epidemiology , Vaccination
5.
New Bioeth ; 28(1): 1-3, 2022 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1700783
6.
J Law Med Ethics ; 49(4): 641-643, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1616892

ABSTRACT

In this article, we comment on Ciaffa's article 'The Ethics of Unilateral Do-Not-Resuscitate Orders for COVID-19 Patients.' We summarize his argument criticizing futility and utilitarianism as the key ethical justifications for unilateral do-not-resuscitate orders for patients with COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Resuscitation Orders , Dissent and Disputes , Humans , Medical Futility , SARS-CoV-2
7.
Kennedy Inst Ethics J ; 31(4): 447-451, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1571966

ABSTRACT

In "Were Lockdowns Justified? A Return to the Facts and Evidence", we argue that Eric Winsberg, Jason Brennan and Chris Surprenant fail to make their case that initial COVID-19 lockdowns were unjustified, due to the fact their argument rests on erroneous factual claims. As is made clear by a response in this volume, the authors mistakenly take us to have been defending the imposition of lockdowns. Here, we clarify the aims of our original paper, and emphasise the importance of getting the facts right when making philosophical arguments in such a contentious domain.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Communicable Disease Control , Dissent and Disputes , Humans , SARS-CoV-2
9.
14.
Hist Philos Life Sci ; 43(3): 92, 2021 Jul 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1333146

ABSTRACT

During the COVID-19 pandemic, scientific experts advised governments for measures to be promptly taken; they also helped people to understand the situation. They carried out this role in the face of a worldwide emergency, when scientific understanding was still underway. Public scientific disputes also arose, creating confusion among people. This article highlights the importance of experts' epistemic stance under these circumstances. It suggests they should embrace the intellectual virtue of epistemic humility, regulating their epistemic behavior and communication accordingly. In so doing, they would also favour the functioning of the broad network of knowledge-based experts, which is required to properly address all the aspects of the global pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Health Communication/standards , Knowledge , Medicine/standards , Science/standards , Dissent and Disputes , Humans , Mass Media , Uncertainty
15.
Clin Infect Dis ; 74(8): 1429-1441, 2022 Apr 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1316807

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Despite the availability of safe and efficacious coronavirus disease 2019 vaccines, a significant proportion of the American public remains unvaccinated and does not appear to be immediately interested in receiving the vaccine. METHODS: In this study, we analyzed data from the US Census Bureau's Household Pulse Survey, a biweekly cross-sectional survey of US households. We estimated the prevalence of vaccine hesitancy across states and nationally and assessed the predictors of vaccine hesitancy and vaccine rejection. In addition, we examined the underlying reasons for vaccine hesitancy, grouped into thematic categories. RESULTS: A total of 459 235 participants were surveyed from 6 January to 29 March 2021. While vaccine uptake increased from 7.7% to 47%, vaccine hesitancy rates remained relatively fixed: overall, 10.2% reported that they would probably not get a vaccine and 8.2% that they would definitely not get a vaccine. Income, education, and state political leaning strongly predicted vaccine hesitancy. However, while both female sex and black race were factors predicting hesitancy, among those who were hesitant, these same characteristics predicted vaccine reluctance rather than rejection. Those who expressed reluctance invoked mostly "deliberative" reasons, while those who rejected the vaccine were also likely to invoke reasons of "dissent" or "distrust." CONCLUSIONS: Vaccine hesitancy comprises a sizable proportion of the population and is large enough to threaten achieving herd immunity. Distinct subgroups of hesitancy have distinctive sociodemographic associations as well as cognitive and affective predilections. Segmented public health solutions are needed to target interventions and optimize vaccine uptake.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Vaccines , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines , Cross-Sectional Studies , Dissent and Disputes , Female , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , United States/epidemiology , Vaccination
16.
J Med Ethics ; 47(9): 595-598, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1301667

ABSTRACT

This paper gives an ethical argument for temporarily waiving intellectual property (IP) protections for COVID-19 vaccines. It examines two proposals under discussion at the World Trade Organization (WTO): the India/South Africa proposal and the WTO Director General proposal. Section I explains the background leading up to the WTO debate. Section II rebuts ethical arguments for retaining current IP protections, which appeal to benefiting society by spurring innovation and protecting rightful ownership. It sets forth positive ethical arguments for a temporary waiver that appeal to standing in solidarity and holding companies accountable. After examining built-in exceptions to existing agreements and finding them inadequate, the paper replies to objections to a temporary waiver and concludes, in section III, that the ethical argument for temporarily waiving IP protection for COVID-19 vaccines is strong.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines , COVID-19 , Dissent and Disputes , Humans , Intellectual Property , SARS-CoV-2
18.
J Relig Health ; 60(4): 2331-2352, 2021 Aug.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1241689

ABSTRACT

The current COVID-19 pandemic is a major challenge for many religious denominations. The Roman Catholic Church strongly depends on physical communal worship and sacraments. Disagreements grow concerning the best balance between safety and piety. To address this issue, I review the major transmission risks for the SARS-CoV-2 virus and list certain measures to enhance the safety of the Roman Catholic Liturgy without compromising its intrinsic beauty and reverent spiritual attitude. This can be achieved through assimilation of several traditional elements into the modern liturgy. I emphasize that religious leadership and decision-making should be transparent and based on inclusiveness, pluralism, best scientific evidence and voluntary cooperation.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Catholicism , Dissent and Disputes , Humans , Pandemics/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2
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