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COVID-19: Original Article
Parental concerns about COVID-19 vaccine safety and hesitancy in Korea: implications for vaccine communication
Hye-Kyung Cho, Hyunju Lee, Young June Choe, Shinkyeong Kim, Sujin Seo, Jiwon Moon, Eun Hwa Choi, Geun-Yong Kwon, Jee Yeon Shin, Sang-Yoon Choi, Mi Jin Jeong, Myoungsoon You
Epidemiol Health. 2023;45:e2023004.   Published online December 13, 2022
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AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDF
Vaccination is one of the most important strategies to contain the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Vaccination in children is dependent on their parents, making it important to understand parents’ awareness and attitudes toward vaccines in order to devise strategies to raise vaccination rates in children.
A web-based nationwide survey was conducted among Korean parents of 7-year-old to 18-year-old children in August 2021 to estimate parents’ intention to vaccinate their children against COVID-19 and identify key factors affecting parental acceptance and hesitancy through regression analysis.
Approximately 56.4% (575/1,019) were willing to vaccinate their children against COVID-19. Contributing factors to COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy were being a mother (adjusted odds ratio [aOR], 0.36; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.25 to 0.52), a lower education level (aOR, 0.83; 95% CI, 0.70 to 0.97), hesitancy to other childhood vaccines (aOR, 0.78; 95% CI, 0.64 to 0.96), and refusal to vaccinate themselves (aOR, 0.08; 95% CI, 0.02 to 0.20). Having older children (aOR, 1.20; 95% CI, 1.13 to 1.28), trusting the child’s doctor (aOR, 1.19; 95% CI, 1.07 to 1.32), positive perceptions of the COVID-19 vaccine’s effectiveness (aOR, 2.60; 95% CI, 1.90 to 3.57) and perceiving the COVID-19 vaccine as low-risk (aOR, 1.68; 95% CI, 1.27 to 2.24) were associated with COVID-19 vaccine acceptance. Concerns about adverse reactions were the most common cause of hesitancy.
Providing parents with accurate and reliable information on vaccine effectiveness and safety is important to increase COVID-19 vaccine uptake in children. Differential or targeted approaches to parents according to gender, age, and their children’s age are necessary for effective communication about vaccination in children.
Korean summary
부모에게 백신 효과와 안전성에 대한 정확하고 믿을만한 정보를 제공하는 것이 소아 코로나19 백신 접종률을 높이는데 중요하다. 자녀의 백신 접종에 대한 의사소통을 효율적으로 하기 위해서는 부모의 성별과 연령, 자녀의 연령을 고려한 차별적인 접근 방법이 필요하다.
Key Message
To improve COVID-19 vaccine uptake in children, it's crucial to provide parents with reliable and precise information about vaccine safety and effectiveness. Targeted communication strategies that consider factors such as the age of the parents and their children, as well as gender, may be necessary to effectively convey this information.


Citations to this article as recorded by  
  • Safety of BNT162b2 mRNA COVID-19 vaccine in children with chronic kidney disease: a national population study from South Korea
    Young June Choe, Yo-Han Ahn, Eunsun Gwak, Eunseo Jo, Jinseob Kim, Seung-Ah Choe
    Pediatric Nephrology.2024; 39(2): 625.     CrossRef
  • Assessing the determinants of influenza and COVID-19 vaccine co-administration decisions in the elderly
    Seunghyun Lewis Kwon, So-Yeon Kim, Minju Song, Hyung-Min Lee, Seon-Hwa Ban, Mi-Soon Lee, Hyesun Jeong
    Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics.2024;[Epub]     CrossRef
  • Descriptive cross-sectional study to evaluate perception, attitude, and practice of parents regarding COVID-19 vaccination in children 10–12 years of age—A step toward prevention of future COVID-19 outbreaks in India
    Vivek Mehta, Deep Inder, Pawan Kumar, Anupma Raheja
    Journal of Family Medicine and Primary Care.2024; 13(5): 2104.     CrossRef
  • Willingness and hesitancy of parents to vaccinate against COVID-19 their children ages 6 months to 4 years with frail conditions in Italy
    Grazia Miraglia del Giudice, Giorgia Della Polla, Mario Postiglione, Italo Francesco Angelillo
    Frontiers in Public Health.2023;[Epub]     CrossRef

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