Public’s confidence in safety of coronavirus vaccines is dropping
A study into the impact of the Ministry of Health’s campaign to reassure the people of the Netherlands about the safety of the coronavirus vaccine has revealed that the public’s confidence in the safety of the vaccines has actually declined since January.
Dutch government invests millions into vaccination campaign
At the end of last year, the Dutch government launched an information campaign in an attempt to increase vaccine uptake by informing the public about the safety of the various coronavirus vaccines and the government’s vaccination policy. The Ministry of Health says around six million euros has been set aside for the campaign.
However, in spite of the scale of the campaign, research conducted by RTL Nieuws has found that the government’s key goals have not been achieved. Instead, confidence in the safety of the vaccines and the approach to the vaccination programme have dropped compared to December 2020.
The Dutch government attributes the failure of their campaign to a number of external factors, namely the inconsistency and unpredictability of the vaccine deliveries, as well as concerns about the safety of the AstraZeneca jab.
Confidence in coronavirus vaccines is dropping in the Netherlands
The study found that 10 percent of respondents now believe that the vaccines have no effect whatsoever on helping to control the spread of COVID-19, while the percentage of people who trust the vaccines has dropped from 60 to around 50 percent.
Notably, the government’s campaign has apparently had zero impact on the number of people who are willing to get the jab: 70 percent of people say they definitely or probably want to be vaccinated, the same figure as was recorded in December.
A spokesperson for the Ministry of Health said the campaign was now focusing on sending positive information about the safety and possible side effects of the AstraZeneca vaccine, and that the information was targeted at groups who are next in line to be vaccinated. “Due to the scarcity of vaccines, many people are still awaiting their turn. That is why many people will think: I will decide when it is my turn.”