Publication date: Sep 19, 2023
Vaccination is a cornerstone of public health, significantly safeguarding children’s health. Despite the imperative of achieving extensive COVID-19 vaccine coverage, vaccine hesitancy poses a major challenge. This review’s aim is to analyze parental COVID-19 vaccine acceptance and hesitancy during the COVID-19 pandemic and elucidate the factors that influenced their decisions. A search of Medline (PubMed), Embase, and Psycinfo was conducted on February 1, 2022. The inclusion criteria were limited to observational studies that specifically evaluated parental COVID-19 vaccine acceptance or hesitancy for children, published in English. Studies that did not focus on this specific assessment, interventional studies, clinical trials, and secondary literature were excluded. In reviewing 27 articles, parental vaccination acceptance rates were found to be different worldwide. Despite this, most of the articles found the same set of factors impacting parental COVID-19 vaccine acceptance and hesitancy. Parents’ age, education, race, children’s age, and annual household income were the main sociodemographic factors in vaccination decisions. Other common factors were the perceived risk and benefits of the COVID-19 vaccine, the source of information, parents’ acceptance of receiving vaccinations themselves, and previous acceptance of the influenza vaccine. By reviewing parents’ willingness to accept the COVID-19 vaccine for their children, it became clear that a lack of information about vaccine safety and efficacy was the most common factor affecting their decision. This review identified critical factors affecting parents’ vaccination behavior for their children. Awareness of these factors may reduce parents’ COVID-19 vaccine refusal for their children and guide future planning and development of public health studies.