Original Research

COVID-19 vaccine acceptance and associated factors among people living with HIV in the Middle East and North Africa region

Rahma Mohamed, Trenton M. White, Jeffrey V. Lazarus, Amany Salem, Reham Kaki, Wafa Marrakchi, Sara G. M Kheir, Ibrahim Amer, Fida M Ahmed, Maie A Khayat, Nabeela Al-Abdullah, Batool Ali, Roaa Sultan, Bandar Alamri, Anouf Abdulmajid, Ikbal Kooli, Mohamed Chakroun, Tariq A. Madani, Gamal Esmat, Ahmed Cordie
Southern African Journal of HIV Medicine | Vol 23, No 1 | a1391 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajhivmed.v23i1.1391 | © 2022 Rahma Mohamed, Trenton M. White, Jeffrey V. Lazarus, Amany Salem, Reham Kaki, Wafa Marrakchi, Sara G. M Kheir, Ibrahim Amer, Fida M Ahmed, Maie A Khayat, Nabeela Al-Abdullah, Batool Ali, Roaa Sultan, Bandar Alamri, Anouf Abdulmajid, Ikbal Kooli, Mohamed C | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 18 March 2022 | Published: 24 August 2022

About the author(s)

Rahma Mohamed, Endemic Medicine Department, Kasr Alaini School of Medicine, Cairo University Hospitals, Cairo, Egypt; and, Kasr Al-Aini HIV and Viral Hepatitis Fighting Group, Kasr Alaini School of Medicine, Cairo University Hospitals, Cairo, Egypt
Trenton M. White, Barcelona Institute for Global Health (ISGlobal), Hospital Clinic, University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain
Jeffrey V. Lazarus, Barcelona Institute for Global Health (ISGlobal), Hospital Clinic, University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain; and, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain
Amany Salem, Department of Public Health, Kasr Alaini School of Medicine, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt
Reham Kaki, Department of Infectious Disease, Infection Control and Environmental Health, Faculty of Medicine, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Wafa Marrakchi, Infectious Diseases Department, Faculty of Medicine, University Hospital of Monastir, Monastir, Tunisia
Sara G. M Kheir, Disease Control Directorate, Federal Ministry of Health, Khartoum, Sudan
Ibrahim Amer, Department of Hepatology, Gastroenterology and Infectious Diseases, Faculty of Medicine, Kafr El-Sheikh University, Kafr El-Sheikh, Egypt
Fida M Ahmed, Department of Infectious Disease, Infection Control and Environmental Health, Faculty of Medicine, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Maie A Khayat, Department of Infectious Disease, Infection Control and Environmental Health, Faculty of Medicine, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Nabeela Al-Abdullah, College of Nursing, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Batool Ali, Department of Infectious Diseases, East Jeddah General Hospital, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Roaa Sultan, Department of Infectious Diseases, East Jeddah General Hospital, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Bandar Alamri, Department of Infectious Diseases, East Jeddah General Hospital, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Anouf Abdulmajid, Department of Infectious Diseases, East Jeddah General Hospital, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Ikbal Kooli, Infectious Diseases Department, Faculty of Medicine, University Hospital of Monastir, Monastir, Tunisia
Mohamed Chakroun, Infectious Diseases Department, Faculty of Medicine, University Hospital of Monastir, Monastir, Tunisia
Tariq A. Madani, Department of Infectious Disease, Infection Control and Environmental Health, Faculty of Medicine, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Gamal Esmat, Endemic Medicine Department, Kasr Alaini School of Medicine, Cairo University Hospitals, Cairo, Egypt
Ahmed Cordie, Endemic Medicine Department, Kasr Alaini School of Medicine, Cairo University Hospitals, Cairo, Egypt; and, Kasr Al-Aini HIV and Viral Hepatitis Fighting Group, Kasr Alaini School of Medicine, Cairo University Hospitals, Cairo, Egypt; and, Infectious Diseases Department, Armed Forces College of Medicine, Cairo, Egypt


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Abstract

Background: Identifying coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccine acceptance and associated factors among people living with HIV (PLHIV) in the Middle East and North Africa region is important to meet the need for broad-scale vaccination against COVID-19.

Objectives: To investigate the COVID-19 vaccine acceptance rate and factors among PLHIV in the Middle East and North Africa region.

Method: An online cross-sectional survey was conducted among PLHIV currently living in Egypt, Tunisia and Saudi Arabia between March 2021 and August 2021.

Results: Of the 540 respondents, 19.3% reported already being vaccinated against COVID-19 (n = 104), 32.0% responded ‘definitely yes’ (n = 173), and 13.3% responded ‘probably yes’ (n = 72) for intention to receive a COVID-19 vaccine, with an overall COVID-19 vaccine acceptance rate of 64.6% among PLHIV in the region. The most significant predictors of COVID-19 vaccine acceptance included feeling less worried about COVID-19 transmission post-vaccination (221.0% higher odds), and believing the disease is vaccine-preventable (160.0% higher odds). Reported barriers to COVID-19 vaccine acceptance include concerns about vaccine effectiveness and belief that HIV medications protect against COVID-19 transmission, living in a rural area and reporting less-frequent engagement with HIV care. Nine out of 10 participants reported that the chances of them getting COVID-19 vaccine would increase if given adequate information and if their doctor recommended it.

Conclusion: Findings of the study can help researchers, health officials, and other health system actors understand the predictors and barriers to COVID-19 vaccine acceptance reported by PLHIV. This understanding could inform the future planning of interventions tailored to PLHIV.


Keywords

COVID-19; COVID-19 vaccine; vaccine acceptance; Middle East; HIV

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