Sixty-Five Percent of Adults Say They Would Take The New Covid-19 Vaccine
Almost two-thirds of adults in Britain say they would get the Covid-19 vaccine but Londoners are revealed as the least keen on taking it, a new poll has shown.
Exclusive polling for PoliticsHome found 65 percent of adults would take a vaccine if it became available to them at little or no financial cost.
The desire to get vaccinated varied dramatically across the country with just over half - 55 percent - of people living in London saying they would take it, compared to 74 percent of those surveyed in Wales and the South West.
In London 23 percent said they would not get the jab and 22 percent said they did not know if they would.
The research was carried out by Redfield & Wilton Strategies on 2000 people on December 2.
Perhaps worryingly for the government, which began its vaccine roll out today, one in four people surveyed in the north east said they would not take it, compared to 69 percent who said they would. Six percent said they didn’t know. The region, much of which is currently subject to the highest Tier 3 restrictions, has had some of the higest rates of the virus in the UK this year.
There were similar figures in the East Midlands where 23 percent of people said they wouldn’t take it, and 22 percent in Yorkshire and the Humber.
The results come as the first fully approved Covid vaccine developed by Pfizer/BioNTech was given to grandmother Margaret Keenan, age 90, at University Hospital, Coventry, by nurse May Parsons.
Ms Keenan said: “I feel so privileged to be the first person vaccinated against Covid-19. My advice to anyone offered the vaccine is to take it. If I can have it at 90, then you can have it to.”
Professor Stephen Powis, national medical director of NHS England said it was a “historic moment” and this morning health secretary Matt Hancock broke down in tears on television saying he hoped this was the start of people being able to move on with their lives.
The government hopes that a large number of people will take up the vaccine offer and it will be given to people depending on age and underlying health condition.
Ministers have said it is too early to tell what the vaccine's impact will be on transmission, although tsome scientists globally have made predictions on the percentage of a population needed to have taken a Covid-19 vaccine to bring about herd immunity.
For example a paper published in October in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine calculated that 60 percent of people would need to be vaccinated if the vaccine was deemed to be 80 percent effective. The Pfizer/BioNTech is over 90 percent effective.
Significant efforts are being made within government to encourage people to get the jab with Boris Johnson promising to tackle disinformation online.
Last month social media platforms signed up to a UK government principle that no company should be profiting from COVID-19 vaccine disinformation and commit to swifter responses to content which is not untruthful.
The poll also revealed that 70 percent of adult men said they would take the vaccine compared to 60 percent of women, and the older a person is, the more likely they are to take it.
The age group least likely to say yes to it were those aged between 18 and 24-years-old, with 43 percent in favour compared to 40 percent who said no.
Seventy-three percent of Tory voters said they would take it, compared to 60 percent of those who voted Labour at the last election.