Document Type : Original Article


1 Division of Sustainable Development, College of Science and Engineering, Hamad Bin Khalifa University, Doha, Qatar

2 School of Public Health, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, SAR

3 Department of Health Promotion and Education, University of Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria

4 Department of Biomedical Science, De Montfort University, United Kingdom


BACKGROUND AND AIM: Vaccination has been appraised to be one of the most significant public 
health achievements in human history. However, in countries like Nigeria, vaccine hesitancy is a 
public health challenge that has consistently forestalled concerted efforts made by health authorities 
to curb the spread of communicable diseases such as COVID‑19. To improve COVID‑19 vaccine 
acceptance via targeted interventions, it is imperative to examine the public’s perception. Thus, 
this study aims to evaluate vaccine hesitancy among university students in Southwestern Nigeria.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: The study utilized a descriptive cross‑sectional design. 
A self‑administered questionnaire was administered to a total of 366 respondents who were recruited 
using the convenience sampling technique and snowball approach. Data were entered and analyzed 
using SPSS.
RESULTS: The majority of the respondents were over 18 years (88%) and were between their first 
and third years (81%). Over a tenth of the respondents reported having at least a loved one that 
had tested positive for the virus, while only 88% believed the virus is real. Furthermore, only 17% 
of the students had a positive attitude toward the vaccine. Although 90% of the respondents were 
aware of the administration of COVID‑19 vaccine in Nigeria, only around a quarter were willing to take 
the vaccine, while 5.5% had been vaccinated. The major reasons for COVID‑19 vaccine hesitancy 
highlighted by the respondents were concerns about vaccine side effects (21.3%), lack of trust in the 
authorities (26.5%), vaccine efficacy (13.1%), and diverse mystical possibilities (39.1%).
CONCLUSION: The results indicate that a significant communication gap exists between the 
respondents and local health authorities. To enhance the acceptance of COVID‑19 vaccines, extensive 
and targeted health promotion campaigns are required to allay specific concerns raised by the public.


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