Against the background of the record spread of the fourth wave of Covid-19 in Bulgaria, there has been a slight positive change in attitudes towards vaccination, a poll by the Exacta Research Group has found.
Announcing the results of its poll on November 7, Exacta said that as of November 5, nearly two-thirds of Bulgarians were concerned about the health aspects of the Covid crisis.
“Fears can be overcome through systematic and consistent work that engages the authority of institutions, professionals, opinion leaders, politicians and the media,” the agency said.
Thirty-three per cent of those polled said that they had been vaccinated, either with one, two or three doses.
About 7.2 per cent had received one dose, 25.5 per cent had received two doses and 0.7 per cent three doses.
About 18.1 per cent had not yet been vaccinated but told the pollsters that they intended to do so soon.
Eleven per cent cited medical considerations, such as allergies, as their reason for not being vaccinated.
Close to 38 per cent said that they had not been vaccinated and did not intend being vaccinated.
The largest shares of those who said that they had been vaccinated were people older than 60 (32.8 per cent), those aged 40 to 49 (26.4 per cent), university graduates (36 per cent) and residents of Sofia (35 per cent).
The results of the Exacta poll came out a week before Bulgaria’s November 14 presidential and early parliamentary elections. The agency commented that fears about Covid-19 could influence voter turnout.
The agency’s poll found that 41 per cent of supporters of Boiko Borissov’s GERB had been vaccinated, and 30 per cent of supporters of the Bulgarian Socialist Party, Democratic Bulgaria and We Continue the Change party.
The largest group among those who do not want to be vaccinated are people aged 18 to 29 – 56 per cent of them – as well as people aged 30 to 39 – 45 per cent of them.
The agency said that overall, supporters of vaccination (those who have had one, two or three doses, as well as those who intend to be vaccinated soon) predominate among Democratic Bulgaria supporters (70.3 per cent), GERB (69 per cent) and We Continue the Change (55.6 per cent). Among Movement for Rights and Freedoms supporters, the figure was 49.3 per cent, the poll found.
Opponents of vaccination predominate among supporters of Slavi Trifonov’s ITN party (56.6 per cent), the Bulgarian Socialist Party (52 per cent), “Rise Up Bulgaria! We’re Coming” (55 per cent) and Vuzhrazhdane (75 per cent), as well as among those who do not intend voting or are hesitating about voting (in both cases, 63 per cent).
Separately, according to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control’s vaccine tracker, as of November 5 the cumulative uptake of at least one dose among adults over 18 in Bulgaria was 29.1 per cent, compared with the EU-EEA figure of 80.8 per cent.
The figure for those in Bulgaria who had completed the vaccination cycle was 26.5 per cent, compared with 75.7 per cent for the EU-EEA area.
The Exacta Research Group poll was done from October 29 to November 5 2021 among 1025 adult Bulgarian citizens in 91 settlements across Bulgaria. A stratified two-stage sample using quotas for the main socio-demographic characteristics was used, which reproduces the structure of the population by place of residence, gender and age. The methodology was a direct semi-standardised face to face interview. The margin of error is plus-minus three per cent. The poll was done using Exacta Research Group’s own funds.
(Photo: Savo Prelevic/EC Audiovisual Service)
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