With the global coronavirus pandemic continue to wreak havoc on all manner of industries, the race to get the vaccine out to as many people as possible has been one all countries have united in. While the rollout has been slow to start here in Australia, more and more Australians are rolling up their sleeves to get the jab. It’s an exciting and scary time. While some feel a sense of anxiousness about the vaccine, others are angry that they can’t get it sooner, some feel worried about what will happen after the jab, and then there are some who are concerned for those who don’t get it.
While all these feelings are valid, the government is on a quest to see as many people get the jab as possible. After all, we’ve seen how quickly one or two cases can spiral into a second or third lockdown, something we hope to avoid at all costs. But as research out of the Australian National University has found, young women between the ages of 18 and 24 are the most reluctant to get the vaccine, with just 43 per cent responding that they are happy to get the jab as soon as possible, compared to 62 per cent of young men.
In an interview with ABC Radio, Dr Kate Reynold, professor of psychology at the Australian National University, explained: “Younger people were less willing compared to older people but also women were less willing compared to men.”
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Researchers at ANU collected data from 3030 Australians between May and October of lsat year, and their results indicate that certain social and behavioural indicators are behind the reason young women were more hesitant about the vaccine, notably that they have a lack of trust in the government.
“It seems that young women, in particular, had less confidence in government and that was related to whether they were likely to get the vaccine or not,” said Professor Reynolds.
Regardless of gender, age or ethnicity, the researchers found that those with greater confidence in the government were more on board with the vaccination. Another important factor was whether people felt a sense of belonging in their neighbourhood, or felt they were instead being treated unfairly. “They give us some insights into things that are driving people’s decisions that are very much about social cohesion in the community of which confidence in the government forms part of that.”
While there remains a lot to be desired in terms of the government and the shocking allegations of sexual assault that have been brought against a number of people in positions of power, as far as the vaccine is concerned it’s important to remember that these vaccines have all undergone safety checks required of all medical vaccines. This is about protecting yourself and those around you from the coronavirus, something that, hopefully, goes above your feelings towards the government.
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