Good News! Vaccine Hesitancy Has Plummeted, While Vax Rates Have Increased

What a difference a couple of months (and a COVID outbreak) can make.

Image of Covid Vaccine beside happy Nicole Kidman

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Finally, some good news! According to a new poll by The Guardian Australia, vaccine hesitancy has plummeted.

According to new data, the number of respondents who said they would never get vaccinated decreased from 16 percent in June to just eight percent in August.

The number of people who said they will get vaccinated, just not straight away — Boomers waiting for another vaccine, perhaps — has dropped from 42 percent in May to roughly 25 percent this month.

When it comes to mandatory vaccines, three-quarters of people support a compulsory jab in fields like healthcare, aged care, disability care, and education — and only 10 percent were opposed. The results were good timing as Qantas today announced that it would mandate vaccines for workers by March 2022, despite the Federal Government showing no sign of formal support for businesses that make this call.

It shows a dramatic shift since the Delta COVID variant began spreading through Australia, starting in Sydney before making its way into Victoria, the ACT, Queensland, and the Northern Territory. Data from The Melbourne Institute shows vaccine hesitancy started increasing in February, and bumped up over April and May — which could be down to all the changing AstraZeneca advice — before starting to decline in June.

In a press conference today, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said that by tomorrow, August 19, one in two Australians will have received a vaccine shot.

It’s encouraging news on a day when Sydney counted another round of record cases, with 633 cases of community transmission overnight.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has foreshadowed that the numbers will get worse over the coming days. However, NSW Chief Health Officer Kerry Chant also made the point that it takes two weeks for COVID vaccines to become effective, and that there is at least three weeks between jabs.

So, knowing that vaccine hesitancy is down — and jabbing is up — is a good thing indeed.