Around the world, there is prevalent hesitancy and mistrust in Covid-19 vaccines. This is due to lack of trust in the safety, importance and effectiveness of vaccines in the past years. In many countries, the people’s hesitance to be vaccinated is rooted in their histories.
In the US, for example, more Blacks and Hispanics mistrust vaccines compared to whites. This is because there have been many cases in the past where they were subjected to experiments or studies without their consent. Their mistrust also stems from the racial bias of the health system favoring whites.
In a study conducted from 2015 to 2019, vaccine confidence plummeted in the Philippines, especially for those administered to children due to documented fears over the Dengvaxia vaccine. Around the same time, vaccine confidence also registered a low in Europe. This is despite studies proving that many of the vaccines are safe and effective.
Vaccine hesitancy is also linked to big pharmaceutical companies’ secrecy of their researches, which is the nature of the industry where vaccines are developed and manufactured not for the common good but for capitalist profit.
Inspite of all this, the World Health Organization maintains it is important at this stage to protect the people, especially health workers and vulnerable groups, against hospitalization, severe sickness and death. All approved Covid-19 vaccines have been proven effective against these. It has strongly recommended these vaccines even in countries where new variants have emerged.