Perspectives of primary care physicians on acceptance and barriers to COVID-19 vaccination

Philip Day, Chance Strenth, Neelima J Kale, F. David Schneider, Elizabeth Mayfield Arnold

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objectives The purpose of this study was to examine the perspectives of primary care physicians in Texas around vaccine acceptance and potential patient barriers to vaccination. National surveys have shown fluctuating levels of acceptance for COVID-19 vaccination, and primary care physicians could play a crucial role in increasing vaccine uptake. Design This study employed a cross-sectional anonymous survey design to collect data using an online questionnaire. Participants were asked about vaccination practices and policies at their practice site, perceptions of patient and community acceptance and confidence in responding to patient vaccine concerns. Setting From November 2020 to January 2021, family medicine physicians and paediatricians completed an online questionnaire on COVID-19 vaccination that was distributed by professional associations. Participants The survey was completed by 573 practising physicians, the majority of whom identified as family medicine physicians (71.0%) or paediatricians (25.7%), who are currently active in professional associations in Texas. Results About three-fourths (74.0%) of participants reported that they would get the vaccine as soon as it became available. They estimated that slightly more than half (59.2%) of their patients would accept the vaccine, and 67.0% expected that the COVID-19 vaccine would be accepted in their local community. The majority of participants (87.8%) reported always, almost always or usually endorsing vaccines, including high levels of intention to recommend COVID-19 vaccination (81.5%). Participants felt most confident responding to patient concerns related to education about vaccine types, safety and necessity and reported least confidence in responding to personal or religious objections to COVID-19 vaccination. Conclusions The majority of the physicians surveyed stated that they would receive the COVID-19 vaccination when it was available to them and were confident in their ability to respond to patient concerns. With additional education, support and shifting COVID-19 vaccinations into primary care settings, primary care physicians can use the trust they have built with their patients to address vaccine hesitancy and potentially increase acceptance and uptake.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number001228
JournalFamily Medicine and Community Health
Volume9
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 5 2021

Keywords

  • COVID-19
  • family medicine
  • pediatrics
  • vaccination refusal

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Family Practice

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