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Asian Institute of Research, Journal Publication, Journal Academics, Education Journal, Asian Institute
Asian Institute of Research, Journal Publication, Journal Academics, Education Journal, Asian Institute

Journal of Health and Medical Sciences

ISSN 2622-7258

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open access

Published: 14 June 2024

SARS-CoV-2 Vaccine Hesitancy and Acceptance Among Medical Students in Helmand, Afghanistan

Abdul Tawab Khpalwak, Abdul Rahman Arian, Ali Ahmad

Bost University (Afghanistan), Helmand University (Afghanistan)

journal of social and political sciences
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Pages: 88-96

Keywords: COVID-19, Vaccine Hesitancy, Medical Students, Vaccine Acceptance, COVID-19 Afghanistan


Background/Objective: This study aimed to identify COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy among medical students in Helmand, Afghanistan, and its contributing factors. The findings will be presented to key healthcare organizations for peer review and used to develop a regional Risk Communication and Community Engagement (RCCE) strategy to increase national vaccine acceptance among medical students. Methods: This study employed a structured approach consisting of three steps. First, a paper-based Knowledge, Attitude, and Practice (KAP) questionnaire was developed and tested for efficacy and understanding. Second, using Yamane's formula to determine the appropriate sample size, a population-based stratified sampling method was employed to select 200 respondents from 937 medical students in 21 classes. Results: A survey conducted in February 2022 revealed a high percentage (38.6%, or 56 out of 145) of medical students hesitant to receive SARS-CoV-2 vaccination in Helmand, Afghanistan. Factors contributing to this hesitancy include a lack of information about COVID-19 vaccination, doubts about its adverse effects, and fear of long-term sequelae associated with immunization. Conclusion: The results of this study provide valuable insights for professors, policymakers, and health organizations to address factors contributing to COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy among medical students. Approaches such as RCCE campaigns, public awareness initiatives, and incorporating a dedicated vaccination chapter into the medical curriculum can minimize hesitancy and increase vaccine acceptance. Addressing vaccine hesitancy is crucial to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and protect the health of medical students at higher risk due to their proximity to infected populations.


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