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Factors influencing staff attitudes to COVID-19 vaccination in care homes in England: a qualitative study

Friedrich, Bettina; Forbes, Gillian; Jhass, Arnoupe; Lorencatto, Fabiana; Shallcross, Laura; Antonopoulou, Vivi; (2023) Factors influencing staff attitudes to COVID-19 vaccination in care homes in England: a qualitative study. BMC Health Services Research , 23 (1) , Article 1066. 10.1186/s12913-023-10031-7. Green open access

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Abstract

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic disproportionately affected people living and working in UK care homes causing high mortality rates. Vaccinating staff members and residents is considered the most effective intervention to reduce infection and its transmission rates. However, uptake of the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine in care homes was variable. We sought to investigate factors influencing uptake of COVID-19 vaccination in care home staff to inform strategies to increase vaccination uptake and inform future preparedness. METHODS: Twenty care home staff including managerial and administrative staff, nurses, healthcare practitioners and support staff from nine care homes across England participated in semi-structured telephone interviews (March-June 2021) exploring attitudes towards the COVID-19 vaccine and factors influencing uptake. We used thematic analysis to generate themes which were subsequently deductively mapped to the Capability, Opportunity, Motivation-Behaviour (COM-B) model. The Behavioural Change Wheel (BCW) was used to identify potential intervention strategies to address identified influences. RESULTS: Enablers to vaccine uptake included the willingness to protect care home residents, staff and family/friends from infection and the belief that vaccination provided a way back to normality (reflective motivation); convenience of vaccination and access to accurate information (physical opportunity); and a supporting social environment around them favouring vaccination (social opportunity). Barriers included fears about side-effects (automatic motivation); a lack of trust due to the quick release of the vaccine (reflective motivation); and feeling pressurised to accept vaccination if mandatory (automatic motivation). CONCLUSIONS: We identified influences on COVID-19 vaccine uptake by care home staff that can inform the implementation of future vaccination programmes. Strategies likely to support uptake include information campaigns and facilitating communication between staff and managers to openly discuss concerns regarding possible vaccination side effects. Freedom of choice played an important role in the decision to be vaccinated suggesting that the decision to mandate vaccination may have unintended behavioural consequences.

Type: Article
Title: Factors influencing staff attitudes to COVID-19 vaccination in care homes in England: a qualitative study
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1186/s12913-023-10031-7
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1186/s12913-023-10031-7
Language: English
Additional information: © The Author(s) 2023. Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativeco mmons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated in a credit line to the data.
Keywords: Behavioural influences, COVID-19 pandemic, COVID-19 vaccine, Care home employees, Care homes, Mandatory vaccination
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Health Informatics
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Clinical, Edu and Hlth Psychology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Health Informatics > Infectious Disease Informatics
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10178678
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