According to a new report, confidence in childhood vaccines has dipped by 44 percent during the Covid-19 pandemic, while confidence remained steady in China, India, and Mexico.
A new report on immunisation suggests that confidence in childhood vaccines has fallen up to 44 percent in 52 countries coinciding with the largest sustained backslide in childhood immunization in 30 years, fuelled by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The only three countries where vaccine confidence remained steady were China, India, and Mexico. The data from these countries indicates the perception of the importance of vaccines held firm or even improved.
The report attributed this trend to several factors, including uncertainty about the response to the pandemic, growing access to a wider range of information, and political polarization.
Catherine Russell, the executive director of UNICEF, said that this data is a worrying warning signal.
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“At the height of the pandemic, scientists rapidly developed vaccines that saved countless lives. But despite this historic achievement, fear and disinformation about all types of vaccines circulated as widely as the virus itself,” Russell said in a press release.
“We cannot allow confidence in routine immunizations to become another victim of the pandemic. Otherwise, the next wave of deaths could be of more children with measles, diphtheria or other preventable diseases.”
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