Given the much greater COVID-19 mortality risk experienced by people with intellectual disabilities, understanding the willingness of people with intellectual disabilities to take a COVID-19 vaccine is a major public health issue.
In December 2020-February 2021, across the United Kingdom 621 adults with intellectual disabilities were interviewed remotely and 348 family carers or support workers of adults with intellectual disabilities with greater needs completed an online survey, including a question on willingness to take a COVID-19 vaccine if offered.
87.0% of interviewees with intellectual disabilities were willing to take a COVID-19 vaccine, with willingness associated with white ethnicity, having already had a flu vaccine, gaining information about COVID-19 from television but not from social media, and knowing COVID-19 social restrictions rules. 81.7% of surveyed carers of adults with intellectual disabilities with greater needs reported that the person would be willing to take a COVID-19 vaccine, with willingness associated with white ethnicity, having a health condition of concern in the context of COVID-19, having had a flu vaccine, being close to someone who had died due to COVID-19, and having shielded at some point during the pandemic.
Reported willingness to take the COVID-19 vaccine is high amongst adults with intellectual disabilities in the UK, with factors associated with willingness having clear implications for public health policy and practice.
- intellectual disability