Investigation of the Relationship Between the Level of Health Literacy and Vaccine Hesitancy

Aydan Kayserili, Inci Kayın


Objective: The objective of the study was to investigate the relationship between the level of health literacy and vaccine hesitancy. Furthermore, the dependence of the level of health literacy and vaccine hesitancy on socio-demographic variables were analyzed. Material and Methods: The study was conducted with 403 individuals via online and the questionnaire included the socio-demographic questions and two scales. The study was designed as a cross-sectional study and carried out during February- March, 2022 in Turkey. The online survey included a brief information on the study objective, anonymity and confidentiality of the collected data and voluntary participation. Data were collected through Turkish Health Literacy Scale-32 (TSOY-32) which was developed on the basis of the HLS-EU Study Conceptual Framework for Turkey and Vaccine Hesitancy Likert Scale. Data were analyzed by using SPSS-25 ve Lisrel 8.80. Results: The study suggested that there was a positive weak association between the level of health literacy and vaccine hesitancy, meaning as health literacy of participants increased the vaccine hesitancy of participants decreased. In terms of socio-demographic factors, both health literacy average index scores and vaccine hesitancy average scores were found to be differing in relation with education and income status of participants. Discussion and Conclusion: According to the recent European Health Literacy Survey study conducted in Europe, the findings indicated that 12% of the people who participated in in survey had insufficient general health literacy, and 35% had problematic health literacy. Our findings showed that 43% of respondents fell into a problematic category, and 30% were in the insufficient category. There is a need to conduct new studies using multiple measurement tools that are specific to vaccine literacy and those used to measure general health literacy.

Keywords: Health literacy, Vaccine hesitancy, Turkish health literacy scale-32

DOI: 10.7176/JHMN/104-04

Publication date: November 30th 2022

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