COVID-19 vaccination intention in the UK: results from the COVID-19 vaccination acceptability study (CoVAccS), a nationally representative cross-sectional survey

Hum Vaccin Immunother. 2021 Jun 3;17(6):1612-1621. doi: 10.1080/21645515.2020.1846397. Epub 2020 Nov 26.


To investigate factors associated with intention to be vaccinated against COVID-19 we conducted a cross-sectional survey of 1,500 UK adults, recruited from an existing online research panel. Data were collected between 14th and 17th July 2020. We used linear regression analyses to investigate associations between intention to be vaccinated for COVID-19 "when a vaccine becomes available to you" and sociodemographic factors, previous influenza vaccination, general vaccine attitudes and beliefs, attitudes and beliefs about COVID-19, and attitudes and beliefs about a COVID-19 vaccination. 64% of participants reported being very likely to be vaccinated against COVID-19, 27% were unsure, and 9% reported being very unlikely to be vaccinated. Personal and clinical characteristics, previous influenza vaccination, general vaccination beliefs, and beliefs and attitudes about COVID-19 and a COVID-19 vaccination explained 76% of the variance in vaccination intention. Intention to be vaccinated was associated with more positive general COVID-19 vaccination beliefs and attitudes, weaker beliefs that the vaccination would cause side effects or be unsafe, greater perceived information sufficiency to make an informed decision about COVID-19 vaccination, greater perceived risk of COVID-19 to others (but not risk to oneself), older age, and having been vaccinated for influenza last winter (2019/20). Despite uncertainty around the details of a COVID-19 vaccination, most participants reported intending to be vaccinated for COVID-19. Actual uptake may be lower. Vaccination intention reflects general vaccine beliefs and attitudes. Campaigns and messaging about a COVID-19 vaccination could consider emphasizing the risk of COVID-19 to others and necessity for everyone to be vaccinated.

Keywords: COVID-19; Hesitancy; attitudes; barriers; beliefs; vaccine.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • COVID-19 / prevention & control*
  • COVID-19 Vaccines / administration & dosage*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Humans
  • Influenza Vaccines / administration & dosage
  • Intention*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • United Kingdom
  • Vaccination / psychology*


  • COVID-19 Vaccines
  • Influenza Vaccines

Grant support

Data collection was funded by a Keele University Faculty of Natural Sciences Research Development award to SS, JS and NS, and a King’s Together Rapid COVID-19 award granted jointly to LS, GJR, RA, NS, SS and JS. LS, RA and GJR are supported by the National Institute for Health Research Health Protection Research Unit (NIHR HPRU) in Emergency Preparedness and Response, a partnership between Public Health England, King’s College London and the University of East Anglia. NS’ research is supported by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Applied Research Collaboration (ARC) South London at King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust. NS is a member of King’s Improvement Science, which offers co-funding to the NIHR ARC South London and is funded by King’s Health Partners (Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, King’s College London and South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust), Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity and the Maudsley Charity. The views expressed are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the NIHR, the charities, Public Health England or the Department of Health and Social Care.