The University of Southampton carried out a research on vaccine acceptance in Ghana and the findings have shown that 43.4% of Ghanaians believe the vaccines are dangerous and could affect their health.
The research also shows 54.3% say the vaccines may have harmful side effects.
However, 82.8% of Ghanaians also say they are willing to take the vaccine when offered the opportunity.
This research comes as the Ghana Health Service readies itself to inoculate more Ghanaians following the arrival of some three hundred and fifty thousand AstraZeneca vaccines on Friday.
“Among those who said that they were not willing to be vaccinated, reasons included believing that they would experience harmful side effects from the vaccine (54.3%), believing the vaccine to be dangerous (43.4%), and government mistrust (40.0%). Other reasons included not having enough information about the vaccine (23.2%), pharmaceutical mistrust (19.9%), believing that they would be allergic to the vaccine (17.2%), and believing that the vaccine would not work (16.6%),” it said.
The researchers also found out that ” 82.8% of the Ghanaian respondents were willing to be vaccinated against COVID-19 when offered the opportunity. 9.7% said they were not and 7.5% were undecided “.
Speaking on the AM Show Monday, one of the researchers, Kirchuffs Atengble, was worried religious leaders weren’t ready to accept the vaccines.
” Religious leaders have also shown they won’t accept the vaccines. If they as religious leaders are unwilling to take it, then our target of inoculating 20 millions Ghanaians won’t be met ” .
The Executive Director for PACKS Africa also implored political leaders not to politicise the issue but rally their supporters to enable government to meet its target of inoculating 20 million Ghanaians by the end of 2021.