Around the world, the one topic that is being widely discussed is that of the COVID-19 vaccine. People wanting to get back to their normal routine — from the pre-pandemic time — are waiting for some kind of relief, so they can go out freely once again, interact with others and not worry about contracting the virus. But, according to a recent GOQii COVID-19 – The Way Forward survey, while the Government of India is gearing up for the vaccination drive, more than 50 per cent of India’s population is expressing caution towards taking the vaccine.

The survey has been conducted with approximately 11,000 respondents to understand the openness to take the vaccine, the perception of the government measures to combat COVID-19, and the possible future measures including a lockdown.

GOQii — the smart-tech-enabled preventive healthcare — analysed public opinion on the keenness of taking the vaccine while deep-diving into the interest levels by age and gender. Interestingly, 43 per cent of them are not sure and will only make a solid opinion post initial results about the effectiveness of the vaccine, while 10 per cent are firmly against taking the vaccine as of now. On an optimistic note, 47 per cent of respondents said they are willing to take the vaccine and are actually waiting for it.

The survey also finds that women are more cautious than men, with 48 per cent of the male population willing to get vaccinated, while the female readiness is at 42 per cent. Also with age, the willingness to take the vaccine reduces. The older adults (45-60) and seniors (60+) are not as willing as the younger age groups. This may be because of concerns about complications post taking it.

Additionally, 50 per cent of the respondents feel that the Central Government initiatives have been effective in curbing the spread of COVID-19, while 25 per cent are of the opinion the State Government initiatives have been effective. Only 22 per cent of citizens recognise the efforts of the local government in terms of effectiveness.

It would be interesting to note that 66 per cent of respondents believe the current method of opening up slowly is the way forward, while 34 per cent feel a complete lockdown should be introduced again. Also, 25 per cent have a positive opinion about the current partial lockdown and think it should continue, while 31 per cent want things to return to normal in a gradual way, wherein restrictions will be loosened cautiously and while monitoring the numbers. Only 10 per cent said there should be no restrictions and things should go back to normal.

“The World Health Organization is cautiously optimistic that safe and effective vaccines for COVID-19 will be successfully developed soon. There are different types of initiatives which the government, at the central, state and local level, is working on. We at GOQii commend the efforts that various organisations have put in to help the world see through these difficult times. While the public opinion may vary, the important aspect to note is that preventive healthcare is the only way forward, as boosting immunity and staying healthy is the best and only viable option amidst a dreaded pandemic,” said Vishal Gondal, Founder & CEO, GOQii.

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