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Knowledge and Acceptance of COVID-19 Vaccination among Undergraduate Students from Central and Southern Italy

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Published: 10 June 2021
 by  MDPI AG
Vaccines , Volume 9; doi:10.3390/vaccines9060638

Abstract: At the end of 2020, the Italian Ministry of Health launched a national vaccination campaign to counteract the COVID-19 pandemic. The present study aimed at appraising levels of knowledge about and acceptance of COVID-19 vaccination in a sample of Italian undergraduates during the first phase of the immunization plan. A web-based questionnaire was administered to students attending universities in Bari, Naples, and Rome during the period February–April 2021. Of the total of 3226 participants, 91.9% were keen to receive a COVID-19 vaccination. More than 80% gave correct answers to questions about COVID-19 vaccine administration, functioning, and effects on community health. However, only 63.8% identified the correct composition of the available vaccines. Knowledge was found to be related to sociodemographic features and COVID-19 vaccination acceptance (p< 0.05). COVID-19 vaccination acceptance was found to be related to having a previous vaccination against influenza (OR 3.806, CI 95% 1.181–12.267; p = 0.025) and knowledge (OR 4.759, CI 95% 2.106–10.753; p = 0.000). These results show a good level of awareness about COVID-19 vaccination in this population, which may indicate the effectiveness of communication strategies accompanying the COVID-19 immunization campaign in Italy.
Keywords: SARS-COV-2 / COVID-19 / vaccine hesitancy / vaccine acceptance / information / undergraduates

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