Covid-19 Vaccine Acceptance and Risk Perception in Ghana: Insights from A Study on Tertiary-Level Students and Surrounding Residents in Kumasi

Keywords: Vaccine Acceptance, vaccine risk perception, vaccine safety, COVID-19 vaccine, preventive method, KNUST, Ghana

Abstract

The introduction of COVID-19 vaccines in sub-Saharan Africa has been met with mixed feelings. In Ghana, several concerns were raised about the potency and side effects of the COVID-19 vaccine. We investigated the acceptance and risk perception of students on the KNUST campus and the residents of the surrounding communities to assess the risk factors that will influence their willingness or unwillingness to be vaccinated in the government’s quest to get its citizens vaccinated. A well-structured questionnaire was administered online and through face-to- face interviews to survey 3332 respondents between the periods of March 15 and May 28, 2021. Chi-square analysis was used to show the association between the sociodemographic characteristics and, the acceptance and risk perception of the COVID-19 vaccine. Logistic regression analysis was used to explain the relationship between the acceptance and risk perception of the COVID-19 vaccine and the various socio-demographic characteristics. Out of 3323 respondents, 1,703 (45.23%) were hesitant whiles 64.39% of 3311 indicated they would accept being vaccinated. In a multivariate analysis, the age range of 31 to 40 years, being male, having secondary level education, and having a previous vaccination post-childhood immunization increased the likelihood of vaccine acceptance. More than half of the students of KNUST and inhabitants around the campus are likely to acceptant the COVID-19 vaccine. However, adequate and timely information is needed to educate prospective vaccine recipients with tertiary level education to better the level of acceptance and address misinformation about vaccines and promote individual and population-level benefits of vaccination.

Author Biographies

Dr. Samuel Nkansah Darko, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology

Samuel has a rich background in biochemistry and chemical pathology. I am a faculty member at the School of Medical Science KNUST with research interests in type 2 diabetes mellitus, hypertension, and clinical diagnostics. Samuel is also into clinical trial quality management systems and doubles as a public health enthusiast.

Dr. Kennedy Gyau Boahen, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology

I am a lecturer at the Department of Clinical Microbiology, KNUST. I have been involved in various biomedical research. My area of research is predominately on infectious disease epidemiology, antimicrobial resistance, and emerging bacterial pathogens.

Ms. Portia Boakye Okyere, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology

I am a PhD candidate and assistant data manager at the School of Public Health and Ellis Owusu Dado Projects all at KNUST. My research interest is in disease modelling, where my dedication lies in utilizing data-driven methodologies to inform effective strategies for disease control and prevention.

Mr. Christopher Nii Kpakpo Addo, Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital

I am a Research Assistant at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital, Kumasi. I have interests in biomedical and microbiological research and Global Health issues.

Ms. Ameyaw Afuaa Janet, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology

I hold a Bachelor’s degree in Biology Sciences from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology. I serve as a Quality Assurance Officer at Nyaniba Health College. My responsibilities include developing and executing processes for ongoing program assessment, including data collection, analysis, and reporting on student performance and faculty effectiveness. I double as a Human Anatomy and Physiology Tutor for the College as well.

Mr. Adjei Emmanuel

I have a BSc in Biological Sciences. My interests are research in Genetics studies of pathogens and infectious diseases epidemiology.

Mr. Hayford Manuella, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology

I hold a Bachelor’s degree in Biological Sciences and I am currently pursuing a Master of Philosophy in Microbiology at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST). I serve as a Research Assistant with the One Health Virology Group at the Kumasi Centre for Collaborative Research in Tropical Medicine (KCCR). I assist scientists in researching infectious diseases to make the world a better place.

Ms. Anwhere Naomi Efua, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology

I hold an undergraduate degree in BSc Biological Sciences, KNUST and I am currently reading the Graduate Entry Medical Program at the University of Cape Coast. I love doing research and discovering new things has always been my passion for as long as I can remember. I also love to do voluntary work and help other young ladies like myself.

Dr (Mrs) Sandra Abankwa Kwarteng, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology

I am a Lecturer at the Department of Theoretical and Applied Biology at KNUST, Kumasi. I have over five (5) years of university-level teaching experience and a research background spanning more than 10 years. With a broad background in Entomology and expertise in vector biology, my research endeavors have spanned various areas of infectious diseases and agriculture. I have conducted studies on ticks and mosquito-borne bacterial and viral disease risks to public health in Kumasi. I have explored the use of novice biological interventions for vector control. My involvement in the management and coordination of several entomological and parasitological studies has been contributory. This comprises the assessment of bedbugs and malaria and anemia prevalence among senior high students and school pupils before and after the application of vector control measures. In the field of agriculture, my research has focused on exploiting black soldier flies and house flies for sustainable livestock and crop production.

Published
2024-07-04
How to Cite
Nkansah Darko, S., Gyau Boahen, K., Boakye Okyere, P., Nii Kpakpo Addo, C., Ameyaw Afuaa, J., Adjei, E., Manuella, H., Anwhere , N. E., & Abankwa Kwarteng, S. (2024). Covid-19 Vaccine Acceptance and Risk Perception in Ghana: Insights from A Study on Tertiary-Level Students and Surrounding Residents in Kumasi. Journal of Science and Technology, 42(2), 1- 18. https://doi.org/10.4314/just.v42i2.1795
Section
Articles