Article Type: Original Article
Title: A Perception on Covid-19 vaccinations among tribal communities in East Khasi Hills in Meghalaya
Year: 2022; Volume: 2; Issue: 1; Page No: 5 – 9
Authors: Sudharsan Vasudevan1*, Samiksha Singh2, Nisha Newar3, Amaljith AB4
Affiliations: 1, 4Final year student, Master of Public health, Indian Institute of Public Health, Delhi, *Intern INCLEN TRUST international in Meghalaya, India. 2Associate Professor in Public Health, 3Staff Nurse Baptist Christian hospital, Institute of Public Health, Delhi, India.
Article Summary: Submitted: 10-January-2022; Revised: 02-February-2022; Accepted: 15-March-2022; Published: 31-March-2022
Background: Covid-19 an illness caused by SARS- COV-2 virus, it has killed millions of people all over the world and has wreaked havoc in India too. Even today there is no confirmed drug that can successfully tackle the illness. According to WHO, efficient vaccines and equitable access to them is vital to curbing the Covid-19 pandemic.
Materials and Methods: With the help of a semi-structured question guide, six focus group discussions were conducted in several villages in East Khasi hills Meghalaya, each focus group had 6-12 participants, thematic analysis was used to analyze the data.
Results: Most of the villagers are affected by covid-19 and the lockdown measures to curb it, but their perceptions on vaccinations were negative. Certain thematic areas that seemed to repeat were, religious beliefs, lack of awareness, individual freedom to choose, not feeling like they require it as they are just agricultural laborers, fear of side effects, and the prevalence of negative propaganda on social media. Most believe if it’s mandatory to take the vaccine everyone would take it. Few village heads suggested better awareness might be able to convince a few.
Conclusion: The majority said they were not ready to get vaccinated, and cited religion and individual freedom to choose as the reasons for their reluctance. Health awareness programs and more pro vaccine governmental policies may help improve coverage.
Keywords: covid-19, covid vaccination, tribal health, vaccine hesitancy, Meghalaya
Source of funding: There are no conflicts of interest
Conflict of interest: None
Dr. Sudharsan Vasudevan,
9/32, North Mada Street,
Arani – 632301,
Tamil Nadu, India.
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