Title: Vaccine Fatigue Hinders Immunization Efforts in British Columbia, Survey Finds
Subtitle: Nearly half of British Columbians experiencing vaccine fatigue, reducing willingness to get immunized against respiratory viruses, including COVID-19 and the flu.
In a recent poll conducted by Abacus Data on behalf of the Canadian Pharmacists Association, it was revealed that an alarming number of British Columbians are experiencing vaccine fatigue. This weariness is negatively impacting individuals’ willingness to get immunized against respiratory viruses such as the flu and COVID-19.
Out of the respondents, 29% stated that they probably won’t or definitely won’t get the flu shot. Moreover, when it comes to the COVID-19 shot, 35% of those surveyed said they do not intend to get vaccinated, whereas 55% expressed that they will probably get immunized against the virus this fall.
Christine Antler, the regional director of Pharmacy for Pharmasave, stressed the importance of getting immunized to protect oneself and the most vulnerable members of the population. Despite vaccine fatigue, Antler emphasized that vaccines remain the most effective tools to prevent illness and the spread of respiratory viruses, which in turn supports vulnerable populations and reduces the strain on the healthcare system.
In response to the survey findings, Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry announced that vaccines would start arriving in B.C. in early October. Priority populations will be invited to book vaccine appointments as part of the province’s efforts to combat vaccine hesitancy and increase immunization rates.
Health Canada has already approved two COVID-19 vaccines, Pfizer-BioNTech Comirnaty Omicron XBB.1.5. and Moderna Spikevax, both of which will be available in B.C. Additionally, the Novavax vaccine is expected to receive approval shortly and will also be accessible to residents of the province.
Antler encouraged even healthy individuals to get vaccinated, explaining the benefits of protecting those most at risk. In addition to getting vaccinated, individuals were advised to continue practicing precautions such as regular handwashing and maintaining social distancing guidelines.
The survey conducted by Abacus Data included 1,650 adult Canadian residents aged 18 and over from August 3 to 7, 2023. The data was carefully weighted according to age, gender, education, and region to ensure accurate representation.
As vaccine fatigue continues to pose a challenge to public health initiatives in British Columbia, healthcare authorities and community leaders are emphasizing the importance of vaccination in safeguarding the population against respiratory viruses.
“Zombie enthusiast. Subtly charming travel practitioner. Webaholic. Internet expert.”