COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy: misinformation and perceptions of vaccine safety

Hum Vaccin Immunother. 2022 Dec 31;18(1):1950504. doi: 10.1080/21645515.2021.1950504. Epub 2021 Jul 30.


Despite COVID-19's devastating toll, many Americans remain unwilling to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. The authors conducted a US national survey to understand the health literacy of adults regarding the vaccine, as well as their COVID-19 beliefs and experiences. People who believed the COVID-19 vaccine was unsafe were less willing to receive the vaccine, knew less about the virus and were more likely to believe COVID-19 vaccine myths. On average, they were less educated, lower income, and more rural than people who believed the vaccine is safe. The results highlight the importance of developing clear health communications accessible to individuals from varied socioeconomic and educational backgrounds.

Keywords: COVID-19; SARS-COV-2; health inequities; health literacy; socioeconomic; vaccine hesitancy.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • COVID-19 Vaccines / adverse effects
  • COVID-19* / prevention & control
  • Health Communication*
  • Humans
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • United States
  • Vaccination
  • Vaccination Hesitancy
  • Vaccines* / adverse effects


  • COVID-19 Vaccines
  • Vaccines

Grants and funding

The authors received no specific funding for this work.