The Mediating Role of the Perceived COVID-19 Vaccine Benefits: Examining Israeli Parents' Perceptions Regarding Their Adolescents' Vaccination

Vaccines (Basel). 2022 Jun 9;10(6):917. doi: 10.3390/vaccines10060917.

Abstract

Israel was among the first countries to initiate adolescent COVID-19 vaccination. As adolescent vaccination requires parental consent, we evaluated the factors associated with parents' willingness to vaccinate their adolescents and their point of view regarding adolescents' involvement in this decision. An online survey was completed by 581 parents of adolescents aged 16-18. The main independent variables included trust in the healthcare system, components of the Health Belief Model (HBM) and adolescents' involvement in the decision, as well as background data, including demographics. Analysis included a multiple logistic regression and mediation examination. Parents reported that 446 adolescents (76.8%) have been or will soon be vaccinated against COVID-19, 12.2% chose not to vaccinate their child and 11% have not yet decided. Vaccination was significantly associated with HBM components and with adolescents' involvement in the decision. The perceived vaccination benefits acted as a mediator in the association between parents' COVID-19 perceived threat and adolescent vaccination, as well as between parents' trust in the healthcare system and adolescent vaccination. Addressing vaccination benefits and barriers is pivotal in the attempt to enhance adolescents' vaccination adherence. Considering the importance of adolescents' involvement in the decision, addressing them directly may also be beneficial in improving vaccination rates.

Keywords: COVID-19; adolescents; compliance; health belief model; hesitation; vaccine.

Grant support

This research received no external funding.