Understanding Norwegian Parents’ COVID-19 Vaccination Behaviours and Intentions: Applying the Theory of Planned Behaviour and the 5C Model
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The COVID-19 pandemic changed people´s everyday life and has been characterised as one of the biggest health crises of modern times. The COVID-19 virus can infect anyone and lead to severe conditions or death. During the first year, several vaccines against the virus were developed to combat the pandemic. However, deciding to vaccinate is not straightforward, and vaccination behaviour is complex. The Norwegian COVID-19 vaccine rollout started at the beginning of 2021, and many Norwegians had to decide whether to vaccinate. There have been different COVID-19 vaccination recommendations for Norwegian children and adults in Norway. To get an insight into Norwegian parents’ perspectives and to better understand what has been essential for them in their decisions, the research questions for this thesis are: What characterises Norwegian parents’ COVID-19 vaccination behaviours? What are the barriers and facilitators to vaccinating themselves and their children against COVID-19? This thesis reports on findings from qualitative in-depth interviews with Norwegian parents, about their experiences, considerations and decisions regarding COVID-19 vaccination. The data is analysed with a thematic analysis approach, and the empirical findings are discussed in light of the theoretical framework for this thesis, namely the Theory of Planned Behaviour and the 5C model. The findings of this study show that parents calculate the perceived risks and benefits of COVID-19 vaccination. The outcome of this calculation varied between themselves and their children. One of the main barriers identified is the vaccine’s confidence and the fact that the vaccines were new. However, confidence in the Norwegian authorities and their recommendations is an essential facilitator for vaccination. Information is identified as an important factor influencing the parents´ attitudes both negatively and positively. Finally, social factors have also played an important role in parents´ vaccination behaviours, where consulting with others has both facilitated and become a barrier to COVID-19 vaccination.