Coronavirus Mini-Series #8 – Behavioural Science to Increase Vaccine Uptake (Jim McManus, Wayne Bateman, Paul Chadwick)

December 2020

Guests joining Stu King:

  • Professor Jim McManus – Director of Public Health at Hertfordshire County Council & Vice President of the Association of Directors of Public Health
  • Wayne Bateman – Behavioural Science Specialist in the Behaviour Change Unit at Hertfordshire County Council
  • Dr Paul Chadwick – Associate Professor and Deputy Director Centre for Behaviour Change at University College London & Consultant Clinical and Health Psychologist.

This episode covers the upcoming release of the rapid response paper: COVID-19 Vaccination: Reducing Vaccine Hesitancy – Review & Recommendations. This is an incredibly important paper that Hertfordshire County Council will share widely to support the use of behavioural science in creating messaging to maximise uptake of the vaccine in the general population by supporting professionals across the system.

Click here for other Herts County Council COVD-19 Behavioural Sciences Resources.

At the time of recording, the vaccine is being rolled out to the most vulnerable & most exposed, however, these groups can also be the most likely to be hesitant to uptake the vaccine due to information and time limitations.

Stu and guests discuss the content of the paper – research on increasing uptake methods, data on previous vaccinations in pandemics, barriers to uptake & surveys on current COVID vaccination hesitancy. It marries up barriers of complacency, confidence & convenience with behaviourally sound strategies to mitigate them. And provides easily digestible messages for Public Health teams to into quick action for local vaccine uptake.

The trio explains how the paper applies the COM-B model to vaccination hesitancy and recommends the EAR strategy when applying to communities: Engaging, Acknowledging and Responding accordingly for each approach and audience. The document is expected to develop over time, with input from the SAGE committee, for example.